Tired of salespeople from different companies calling you at odd hours? This ended with the new General Telecommunications Law that came into force last June. In theory, the end of spam should have arrived, but there are still some legal weaknesses that companies can avoid to continue making happy calls. If you are interested in privacy and data protection, do not miss this post in which we will explain the fundamental points of this new regulation.
Why did this new regulation arise and what are the modifications proposed by article 66 of the General Telecommunications Law?
The new General Telecommunications Law aims to explicitly protect the right of consumers not to receive calls or messages for commercial purposes without having given prior consent, and companies that violate this principle may be penalized. The biggest difference with respect to the 2014 law is that previously the right to oppose these communications was defended, while now an express prohibition on making them is established.
Until now, many companies relied on the National Numbering Plan, which allowed them to dial numbers randomly and without being assigned to a specific name, so there was no processing of personal data. With the new law, this changes, since every call must have a justification.
On the other hand, the main point of the new law lies in article 66, which maintains that: consumers have the right not to receive automated calls without human intervention or fax messages, not to receive unwanted calls for commercial purposes
Exceptions and loopholes: Why do we still receive telephone spam in some cases?
Within the fundamental points, previously seen, in Article 66, there are some exceptions that we detail below:
Making calls without prior consent for commercial purposes is not permitted unless another basis of legitimacy can support the communication than those provided for in article 6.1 of Regulation (EU) 2016/679 on the processing of personal data. In the case of communications with human intervention, they may do so both with prior consent and under the legal exceptions included in the RGPD. For example, your telephone company may call you to offer you new offers or products.
Thus, the main reasons why we sometimes receive a call that we consider to be telephone spam are:
- That a legitimate interest has been expressed by the consumer.
- That a contract has been signed with the company.
The problem comes when consumers do one of these two things without realizing it, therefore, we must be very attentive to the “traps” that companies set for us, such as, for example: signing up for a newsletter to receive something in return, clicking boxes acceptance without previously reading them, filling out forms without seeing conditions to obtain promotions or offers; and participate in many other marketing actions that involve obtaining a reward, since it is usually in exchange for your data and privacy.
Non-compliance and sanctions for companies that violate the new General Telecommunications Law
The most important sanctions for companies that violate the new telecommunications law may vary depending on the jurisdiction and the severity of the violation, for example, subcontractors of the Orange company were fined 30,000 euros for disturbing their customers. Let’s look at other cases!:
Fines: Companies that violate the Telecommunications Law can face significant fines, varying in amount depending on the severity of the violation. These fines can be a fixed sum or a percentage of the company’s income.
Suspension of licenses: In some cases, regulatory authorities may suspend or revoke the operating licenses of a company that violates the law. This can have a devastating impact on your operations.
Obligation to repair damage: Offending companies may be obliged to repair any damage caused to consumers, other companies or telecommunications infrastructure.
Prohibition of participation in future tenders: entities that have been sanctioned may be excluded from participating in future tenders for telecommunications services.
Criminal Liability: In serious violation cases, individuals responsible for the decisions that led to the violation of the law may face criminal charges, which could result in significant fines or even imprisonment.
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