Nokia caught out on SMS spam

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Nokia caught out on SMS spam

Fined $55,000.

Nokia has been fined $55,000 by the media watchdog for spamming its phone users with promotions for other products and mobile accessories.

The Australian Communications and Media Authority found the Finnish phone maker provided no option allowing users to unsubscribe from 'tips' sent by SMS to some phones through its My Nokia service.

Though the company would not normally be required to offer the unsubscribe option for providing factual information, many of the tips sent to users "amounted to promotion of Nokia's products and services, including mobile phone accessories".

An unsubscribe option is available for the global service but at one point appeared only to be available once users logged into the My Nokia website.

Users as far back as 2008 have complained of an inability to unsubscribe from the feature.

"Some businesses are still not getting SMS marketing right," the ACMA's acting chairman Richard Bean said.

"The same rules apply to SMS marketing as for email marketing, and the same rules apply to all businesses, big and small."

As part of an enforceable undertaking [pdf] to the ACMA, Nokia will appoint an independent consultant to audit its SMS marketing compliance and train staff on conforming to the Spam Act, with a five-month deadline to act on any arising conclusions.

It will also be required to audit ten percent of all SMS marketing campaigns from the beginning of the year.

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