FTC Survey Tests Top E-Tailers’ Compliance with Can-spam’s Opt-Out Provisions

The Internet Patrol - Patrolling the Internet for You

In a survey to test whether top e-tailers are allowing consumers to opt out of receiving promotional or marketing messages, the FTC has determined that 89 percent of the online merchants it tested are honoring requests to halt future mailings.

The CAN-SPAM Act, which became effective January 1, 2004, requires that senders of commercial e-mail provide recipients with a clear and conspicuous notice that they have the right to opt out of receiving future marketing messages, provide a mechanism to allow them to exercise that right, and honor requests to be removed from future mailings.


To assess whether e-tailers were complying with the opt-out provisions of the CAN-SPAM Act, FTC staff developed a list of 100 top e-tailers – those who make significant use of the Internet to market their goods or services – and visited their sites. Most of the sites solicited consumers to sign up for special offers, promotions, updates and newsletters via e-mail. FTC staff created three new e-mail accounts and opted in to receive the offers and promotions once for each of the three e-mail accounts and monitored the accounts for six weeks. Then staff notified the e-tailers they wished to stop receiving commercial e-mail messages.

The study showed a high rate of compliance with the CAN-SPAM opt-out provisions. All of the e-tailers who sent e-mail to the FTC accounts provided clear notice of recipients’ right to opt out of receiving future mail and provided recipients with an opt-out mechanism. Eighty nine percent of the e-tailers honored all three of the opt-out requests made by FTC staff and 93 percent complied with opt-out requests for at least some accounts.

Copies of the report are available from the FTC’s Web site at http://www.ftc.gov

No Paywall Here!
The Internet Patrol is and always has been free. We don't hide our articles behind a paywall, or restrict the number of articles you can read in a month if you don't give us money. That said, it does cost us money to run the site, so if something you read here was helpful or useful, won't you consider donating something to help keep the Internet Patrol free?
Click for amount options
Other Amount:
What info did you find here today?:

 

No Paywall Here!
The Internet Patrol is and always has been free. We don't hide our articles behind a paywall, or restrict the number of articles you can read in a month if you don't give us money. That said, it does cost us money to run the site, so if something you read here was helpful or useful, won't you consider donating something to help keep the Internet Patrol free?
Click for amount options
Other Amount:
What info did you find here today?:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.