Canadian Law On Spam And Other Electronic Threats


Legally, spam is not only the sending of unsolicited commercial electronic messages, but also the unauthorized alteration of transmission data, the installation of computer programs without consent, false or misleading electronic representations (including websites), the unauthorized collection of electronic addresses and the collection of personal information by accessing a computer system in contravention of an Act of Parliament.


It can be malwarespywareaddress harvesting, and false or misleading representations involving the use of any means of telecommunications, short message services (SMS), social networking, websites, URLs and other locators, applications, blogs, Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP), and any other current or future Internet and wireless telecommunication threats prohibited by Canada's anti-spam legislation (CASL)

Canada’s new anti-spam legislation (“CASL”) started to be in force on July 1, 2014

CASL applies broadly to commercial electronic messages or “CEMs”, which captures telecommunication, telephone, email, instant messaging, text messaging, etc., provided the message is sent for the purpose of encouraging the recipient to participate in a commercial activity. CASL will apply to common communications by real estate agents and brokerages with clients, such as newsletters, marketing materials, solicitations of interest, etc. Some of the features of CASL include:

  • A requirement for express proactive (not a pre-checked box indicating consent) to receive CEMs, subject to limited exceptions, including a narrow time limited exception for existing business relationships. The draft regulations and guidelines are very prescriptive in terms of what qualifies as express consent;
  • The recipient has to have an opportunity to easily opt-out of or unsubscribe from receiving future CEMs

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Stefania Patraulea

Stefania Patraulea

Sales Representative
CENTURY 21 Leading Edge Realty Inc., Brokerage*
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