CRTC celebrates fifth anniversary of the National Do Not Call List - Seeks to make registrations permanent

OTTAWA AND GATINEAU, QC, Sept. 30, 2013 /CNW/ - Today, the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) marked the fifth anniversary of the National Do Not Call List (DNCL) by announcing its intention to make number registrations permanent.

"The National DNCL has been a success," said Jean-Pierre Blais, Chairman of the CRTC. "Since its launch, millions of Canadians registered their numbers on the list to avoid receiving telemarketing calls and faxes. Telemarketers are getting the message that they must respect this choice or face the consequences, which can include hefty monetary penalties."

Since September 30, 2008, Canadians have registered close to 12 million telephone and fax numbers on the National DNCL and nearly 10,000 telemarketers have registered with the list operator, including some from the United States, India and the Philippines.

The CRTC's investigations have resulted in $3.4 million in penalties and $741,000 in other payments. To date, the CRTC conducted over 1200 investigations, has issued close to 150 citations, more than 80 notices of violation and 130 compliance letters to individuals and organizations.

Consultation on permanent registrations

To improve the National DNCL for Canadians, the CRTC has extended number registrations to September 30, 2014, while it looks at making registrations permanent.

"Canadians who registered their numbers with the National DNCL five years ago may not be aware that their registrations were about to expire," said Mr. Blais. "In order to facilitate this consultation, we have extended the life of the list so that Canadians do not have to worry about receiving calls for the time being."

The CRTC is of the view that it would be too cumbersome to establish a procedure to remove numbers that have been disconnected or reassigned. It has therefore launched a consultation to find out whether registrations could be made permanent without such a procedure.

Canadians are invited to share their views by October 30, 2013. They may do so by:

  • filling out the online form
  • writing to the Secretary General, CRTC, Ottawa, Ontario, K1A 0N2
  • sending a fax at 819-994-0218

Enforcement

The CRTC has used a variety of enforcement strategies to ensure that telemarketers respect the choice Canadians have made not to be disturbed in their homes. The majority of telemarketers has registered with the National DNCL operator and is following the rules.

"Our enforcement activities have yielded significant results and fostered compliance within the Canadian telemarketing industry.  In fact, we are pleased to see that 95% of telemarketers that have been issued notices of violation in the past, have fully complied with the Rules since, said Mr. Blais. "Nevertheless, rogue telemarketers present an ongoing challenge for enforcement agencies around the globe. These telemarketers knowingly ignore the rules and use technology to hide their identities, while calling Canadians repeatedly and at all hours. In collaboration with our partners, we are stepping up our efforts to track down these rogue telemarketers."

Canadians can help the CRTC by filing a complaint when they receive an unwanted telemarketing call. For more information, please see the fact sheet on telemarketing calls and consumer complaints.

Compliance and Enforcement Decision CRTC 2013-528
Compliance and Enforcement Notice of Consultation CRTC 2013-527

Digital media:
Canada's National Do Not Call List: Highlights from the first five years (electronic booklet)
Video on how CRTC handles complaints
Interactive web page: Anatomy of a Call

The CRTC
The CRTC is an administrative tribunal that regulates and supervises broadcasting and telecommunications in Canada.

SOURCE Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission



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