Are you getting annoyed with commercial electronic messages including short messages (SMS), pre-recorded phone messages and emails? Learn about how the law regulates unsolicited electronic messages, how to unsubscribe and protect yourself from spam emails.
The Unsolicited Electronic Messages Ordinance (UEMO)
The Ordinance established rules for sending commercial electronic messages including SMS, pre-recorded messages and spam emails. Here are some of the rules:
- The sender should not withhold calling line identification information when sending out pre-recorded phone messages or fax messages.
- Commercial electronic messages should include accurate sender information.
- Commercial electronic messages should provide an unsubscribe facility for recipients to opt out from receiving further messages.
- The sender should not send any more messages to a recipient after receiving an "unsubscribe request".
- The sender should not send out any commercial electronic messages to a recipient after he has registered his number onto the Do-not-call Registers for 10 working days, unless consent has been given.
- The sender should not send out commercial email messages with misleading subject headings.
Unsubscribing from Commercial Electronic Messages
- You can register your phone or fax number onto the Do-not-call Registers by dialing the registration hotline 1835 000. The Do-not-call Registers regulate faxes, short messages and pre-recorded phone messages. The registration service is free of charge.
- You can also make an "unsubscribe request" to a particular sender. Keep a copy of the request if possible.
- However, if you are not sure about the source of an email message and suspect the email contains computer virus, delete the message immediately. Do not reply or try to unsubscribe.
Suspecting a Contravention of the UEMO
If you suspect a sender has contravened the UEMO, such as sending you further messages even though you have registered your number on the Do-not-call Registers or you have already unsubscribed from them, you can report it to the Communications Authority.How to Report a Suspected Contravention of the UEMO
Staying Away from Spam Emails
- Look for options in websites or emails that allow you to unsubscribe from further emails, offers or other marketing messages.
- Check the terms and conditions before you subscribe to free email account services. Be cautious when you fill in the account profile.
- Use the anti-spam solutions offered by your Internet Service Provider, or install email filters to reduce the amount of spams.
- When feasible, use separate email addresses for different purposes, for example, one for social networking sites and another for more personal matters.
- Avoid using an email address that contains simple dictionary words or common names.
- Install and enable anti-virus software.