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BizReport : Law & Regulation : April 07, 2009

Can-SPAM, now Can-m-SPAM

A new bill has been introduced in the US Senate to help block mobile spam. The proposed m-SPAM act is aimed at reducing unsolicited text messages by increasing government oversight of commercial mobile messaging.

by Kristina Knight

Senator Olympia Snowe (R-Maine) and Senator Bill Nelson (D-Florida) are co-sponsoring the bill. It would extend the provisions set out in the 2004 Can-Spam Act to the mobile arena.

The bill proposes that the FCC (Federal Communications Commission) and the FTC (Federal Trade Commission) would have the ability to reduce mobile spam and block commercial text messages to wireless numbers listed in the Do Not Call Registry.

"Mobile spam invades both a consumer's cell phone and monthly bill," said Senator Olympia Snowe. "There is also increasing concern that mobile spam will become more than an annoyance - the viruses and malicious spyware that are often attached to traditional spam will most likely be more prevalent on wireless devices through m-spam."

According to one report mobile users received more than 1 billion SMS texts in 2007, an increase of nearly 40% YoY; in 2008 they received 1.5 billion texts. However, compared to email spam, m-spam is still seen as very slight. That doesn't mean that lawmakers - or even consumers - should wait to take action. By registering mobile numbers with the National Do Not Call Registry, consumer can reduce the number of unsolicited telemarketing calls and text messages they receive.

Tags: Can-Spam, m-spam, mobile marketing, mobile spam, spam, spam threats

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