The DNC Registry Singapore: 5 Things You Must Know
The Do Not Call Registry (DNC Registry Singapore) benefits consumers who wish to stop receiving telemarketing messages through phone calls, SMS, or fax. This provision covers your home, office, and mobile numbers. The good news? Registration is free and has no expiration date.
It should be noted that under the Personal Data Protection (Amendment) Act 2020, the validity of the results generated from the DNC Registry has been amended from 30 to 21 calendar days effective 1 February 2021. This means that individuals should stop receiving telemarketing messages from organisations 21 calendar days after their registration.
The DNC Registry Singapore is only one of the several provisions under the Personal Data Protection Act 2012 (PDPA). It pays to be aware of the entire scope, something you can achieve with sufficient training on the subject matter. Let Privacy Ninja give you a lowdown of the PDPA, such as the 9 core PDPA obligations, existing PDPA non-compliance in the office, and more. Get started here >>
We are all consumers in one way or another. Surely, we have all gone through the experience of receiving unwanted calls or text messages from persistent salespersons. We understand how annoying this can be, especially when we get a barrage of unwanted messages.
In Singapore, this is mitigated through the inclusion of the DNC Registry provisions under the PDPA. Organisations are prohibited from sending marketing messages to Singapore telephone numbers enrolled in the DNC Registry.
An organisation’s marketing messages are covered in the DNC provisions (including voice calls, SMS, or fax messages) if the purposes are for:
- Offering to provide, advertise, or bolster goods or services;
- Promoting or boosting suppliers or potential suppliers of goods or services; or
- Providing, advertising, boosting interests in land or business and investment opportunities.
Regardless of your organisation’s method of deploying marketing messages – whether directly or tapping another organisation to do so – you must see to it that these messages are not sent to Singapore telephone numbers enrolled in the DNC Registry.
Since the DNC Registry provisions affect both consumers and organisations, it is crucial to understand the impact on both sides of the fence.
The DNC Registry Singapore – 5 things to note for consumers
- Once you have registered your personal number with the DNC Registry, organisations could no longer send you unwelcome messages. Legally speaking, these are called ‘specified messages’. A message is called as such if it has the objective of offering, boosting, or promoting: (a) goods or services, (b) land, or an interest in land, or (c) an opportunity to invest or be part of a business.
- Email addresses are not covered in this provision, as well as business-to-business advertisements. While telemarketers cannot call you if you have registered your personal mobile number in the registry, they may still call your business number. Apart from these, the rest of potential numbers are included in the provision: residential landlines, mobile phone lines, fax lines, text messages, and fax messages.
- Note that the DNC Registry Singapore – taking a hint from its name – only applies when either the sender or the receiver of the message (or both) is in Singapore. A ‘sender’ can also mean an organisation authorised by another to send messages on its behalf. Hence, if you receive a message from a number overseas which has been tapped by a Singapore organisation, you may report that Singapore company for a breach of the registry.
- Even if you have enrolled your personal number in the registry, a business can still reach out to you with product or service offerings if you have given your express consent to receive such advertisements from them. This consent has to be clear and unambiguous, and can be withdrawn anytime by providing notice to the business.
- If you have provided your consent to a specific business entity before the DNC registry Singapore provisions came into effect, this will override your DNC enrollment. In such a case, you would need to specifically withdraw your consent with the specific organisation.
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The DNC Registry Singapore – 5 things to note for businesses
- Organisations have an obligation to check if a number they are about to send a message to is listed in the DNC registry. The same holds true even if they tapped another organisation – such as a local or overseas telemarketing company – to fulfill this on their behalf.
- Effective 1 February 2021, the validity of the results generated from the DNC Registry has been amended from 30 to 21 calendar days. Organisations sending a message to a number listed in the DNC registry can be slapped with a $10,000 fine.
- Some types of messages are excluded from the DNC registry Singapore. They include the following: pure market survey or research messages, messages meant to remind, messages that help facilitate, complete or validate a transaction that a consumer has made or agreed to make, messages that offer warranty, safety or security details, messages that furnish information regarding the account balance that a consumer may have with the business.
- Consent provided by an individual to receive ‘specified messages’ are not valid if they have been obtained through: (a) use of deceptive or untrue information; or (b) unreasonable means in the provision of goods, services, land, interest in land or opportunity.
- The provisions no longer allow anonymous callers and/or unidentified numbers. There must be explicit and correct information identifying the business sending the message and how to get in touch with them. Moreover, all identification and contact information must be valid for 30 days from the sending date.
It should be noted that any third-party service providers offering services to the DNC Registry Singapore are not associated with, endorsed or authorised by the PDPC. Both individuals and businesses that wish for a DNC Registry account with the PDPC must only do so through their official website at www.dnc.gov.sg or via PDPC’s official SMS and toll-free numbers.