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Real Estate Negotiator fined S$27,000 for sending unsolicited telemarketing.

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How many of us have been called on a weekly basis by some sales persons asking us to take up personal loans? What about insurance? I receive these calls on a weekly basis and most of the time I just say no thanks. Well in Singapore, it does not end with a ‘no thanks’. Due to complaints, a real estate agent has been fined S$27,000 after he pleaded guilty to none of 27 charges for breaching the Do not Call (DNC) Registry under the Personal Data Protection Act. Under the PDPA, no one is allowed to send any marketing messages listed under the DNC registry without first getting the owner’s consent. Singapore’s Personal Data Protection Commission said that it has received 235 complaints of unsolicited telemarketing messages from Kuan. Thats a lot of complaints. The S$27,000 fine may seem high but under the PDPA, an offender could be fined up to S$10,000 for each text message sent. The first offender was not from the real estate industry. It was someone who operates a tuition agency.

According to Personal Data Protection Act 2010 (“PDPA”) in Malaysia, the Personal Data Department which has been set up will be enforcing the act which will be in force in 2013. In other words, the Act makes it a criminal offence for data users (organisations, entities, employers) to reveal personal data to third-parties without the data owner’s consent or notification. Compliance failure will make the data user liable to a fine up to RM300,000 and up to two years’ jail, or both, upon conviction. Sounds pretty serious. There has been some civil cases which I found online but I think there has been no cases under the newly gazetted PDPA Act 2010 yet. I always feel that privacy is not a matter taken seriously thus far. Will have to see how serious is the Personal Data Department in their duties then. 🙂

How can we do out part then? Well, if you know the companies which are specifically calling without your permission, you can complain to the Personal Data Department. Write to them here: aduanpdp@kpkk.gov.my  If anyone has any comments with experience writing to them, please do share yeah. I think if we also do our little part to push them to work harder, the unsolicited calls will be reduced and hopefully stopped in the future. Perhaps we should look forward to the first case of someone being fined for making all these unsolicited marketing calls.

written on 25 Oct 2014

Next suggested article: Good news for real estate agents, one unlicensed one arrested.

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