Modi Govt Issues Draft Guidelines To Curb Unsolicited Business Messages; Here

The new government guidelines have been prepared after consultations with stakeholders, including telecom firms and regulators.

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Modi Govt Issues Draft Guidelines To Curb Unsolicited Business Messages; Here's How It Will Impact You
Unsolicited Business Messages- Representative AI Image

New Delhi: If you are one of those who continue to receive spam business calls and messages even after activating ‘Do Not Disturb’ mode on your phone, we have good news for you. The Consumer Affairs Ministry has issued draft guidelines to curb unsolicited and unwanted business communications, inviting public comments until July 21.

Developed after consultations with telecom firms and regulators, the guidelines define “business communication” as any message related to goods or services, including promotional and service messages, but excluding personal communication. This initiative aims to enhance consumer protection by addressing the increasing nuisance of intrusive business calls and texts.

Whom Will The Guidelines Impact?

The new government guidelines will apply to all individuals and entities that make or engage others for such communications or benefit from them, the ministry said in a statement. The draft guidelines classify any business communication as unsolicited and unwanted if it does not comply with the recipient’s consent or registered preferences.

Other conditions that would make a communication unauthorised include using unregistered numbers or SMS headers, calling despite recipients opting out, failing to obtain digital consent, not identifying the caller and purpose, and lacking an opt-out option.

The proposals also bar such communications that violate the telecom regulator Telecom Regulations Authority of India (Trai) rules on commercial messages based on customer preferences. While Trai’s 2018 rules have been effective for registered telemarketers, communications from unregistered marketers using private 10-digit numbers remain unabated, the ministry said.

Update On ‘Do Not Disturb’ (DND)

“Do Not Disturb (DND) registry has been highly effective for registered telemarketers, but the unwarranted communication from unregistered telemarketers and those using 10-digit private numbers remain unabated,” the ministry said.

The government is “committed to safeguarding consumer interests and consumer rights, especially in the increasingly expanding and penetrative consumer space”. The draft guidelines aim to protect consumers from invasive and unauthorised marketing, the ministry added.

(With inputs from agencies)

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