CRTC bares its teeth serving warrant under CASL

Companies that haven’t taken the CRTC seriously may want to rethink their email protocols, following the first-ever warrant served under the nation’s new anti-spam law

CRTC bares its teeth serving warrant under CASL
The Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) announced that it served its first-ever warrant under Canada's anti-spam law (CASL) to take down a command-and-control server located in Toronto as part of a coordinated international effort.

Law enforcement agencies from around the globe have disrupted one of the most widely distributed malware families: Win32/Dorkbot. This malware family has infected more than one million personal computers in over 190 countries.

“We are pleased to work alongside our partners during this investigation to mitigate the harm caused to Canadians and citizens in other countries by Dorkbot,” said Manon Bombardier, CRTC Chief Compliance and Enforcement Officer. “These are very egregious botnets that are used for illicit activities and can lead to identity theft and fraud. This operation shows that partnerships between domestic and international law enforcement agencies are key in the fight against transnational cyber threats.”

Dorkbot spreads through USB flash drives, instant messaging programs, and social networks. Once a computer becomes compromised, it can be instructed to: steal passwords used for online banking and payments; download and install dangerous malware; and join other infected computers in sending multiple requests to a specific server in the hopes of overwhelming its capacity to respond (known as a distributed denial of service attack).

Companies had to update their client contact lists earlier in the year when CASL came into effect on July 1. According to the new law, any unsolicited electronic message sent may be considered a “commercial electronic message,” and any CEM sent will be prohibited unless its receiver has provided consent, with penalties ranging from $1 million for an individual offender to $10 million for companies.

While ensuring your email list complies with the new CASL regulations, brokers should be just as concerned about the “stickiness” of their emails, says Adam Stein, the CEO of LoanTek Inc.

“Stickiness can be defined as the art of keeping your customer engaged at each stage of the sales cycle,” Stein told MBN. “In each email you will want a call to action that induces the client to move forward accordingly.”