Nokia to pay $55k for spam SMS

ACMA recorded a 370 per cent increase in SMS spam during the 2010-11 financial year

Nokia has copped a $55,000 wrist-slapping from the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA), accepting an enforceable undertaking for infringing the Spam Act 2003.

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According to the communications regulator, Nokia “sent or caused to be sent CEMS (commercial electronic messages) with an Australian link, without the consent of the electronic account-holder, potentially in contravention of Section 16 of the Spam Act.”

Further, it claims the spam messages did not contain clean and accurate sender information which is in contravention of section 17 of the act, and also did not include functional unsubscribe facility which is in contravention of sections 18 of the act.

According to Nokia’s enforceable undertaking, the company took steps during ACMA’s investigation to ensure all CEMs sent by Nokia contained a functional unsubscribe facility.

It also took steps including “improving its internal processes” for unsubscribe requests, conducted training of its call centre staff about the Spam Act, as well as an audit of its systems and training materials to better comply with the act.

As part of the undertaking, Nokia will also appoint an independent consultant to review Nokia’s current e-marketing activities as well as produce a report on any deficiencies in the company’s Spam Act compliance and an implementation plan.

ACMA acting chairman, Richard Bean, said in a statement that in 2010-11, the agency recorded a 370 per cent year-on-year increase in reports from the public about spam SMS messages.

“Some businesses are still not getting SMS marketing right,” he said. “The same rules apply to SMS marketing as for email marketing, and the same rules apply to all businesses, big and small.”

The undertaking from Nokia comes just two weeks after ACMA accepted an undertaking from Vodafone Hutchison Australia (VHA) to “rein in wayward dealers” telemarketing the products of Vodafone and 3 Mobile.

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