The Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) has completed the first round of on-site inspections of 13 telemarketing companies located in Toronto and Montreal. These inspections were conducted to ensure telemarketers are following the rules and not calling Canadians who have registered their numbers on the National Do Not Call List (DNCL).
“Inspections are used to make sure telemarketers understand the rules and to assess how well they are being followed,” said Andrea Rosen, the CRTC’s Chief Compliance and Enforcement Officer. “Telemarketers should ensure that they are in compliance with our rules at all times, and more unannounced inspections will be conducted when appropriate.”
The initial inspections focused on telemarketers in a number of industries, which were chosen based on the trends in complaints submitted by Canadians. Inspections were carried out in Toronto the week of May 14, 2012 and Montreal the week of June 4, 2012.
CRTC officials reviewed the telemarketers’ telephone records and verified that they have registered with the National DNCL operator and obtained a subscription for the area codes they are calling. Officials also ensured that the telemarketers are maintaining an internal do not call list, which is a requirement even for calls that are exempt from the National DNCL.
The majority of telemarketers inspected are following the rules, although some minor breaches were uncovered. The CRTC will monitor the steps these telemarketers are taking to come into compliance.
The CRTC uses a variety of strategies to enforce the Unsolicited Telecommunications Rules and reduce the number of unwanted calls to Canadians. The CRTC can also take corrective action with telemarketers and issue warnings, citations and notices of violation.
To date, the CRTC has issued a total of 179 citations and 48 notices of violation with monetary penalties. The CRTC’s enforcement actions have yielded over $2.2 million in penalties and over $740,000 in payments to post-secondary institutions.