Canada's Anti-Spam Legislation (CASL)

The Canadian Anti-Spam Legislation (usually called CASL) is one of the world’s most stringent anti-spam laws. Its primary purpose is to prohibit the sending of spam messages. The legislation also regulates:

  • Installing unwanted computer programs (e.g. spyware and viruses)
  • Altering transmission data
  • Providing false or misleading information in a message
  • Harvesting addresses
  • Collecting personal information

Any messages that contain commercial content may constitute a Commercial Electronic Message under CASL. CASL, however, does not apply to message that are solely related to the core activities of UVic as these activities are not considered to be “commercial” in nature.  Further, CASL does not apply to messages sent by UVic for the primary purpose of raising funds.

Non-compliance with CASL may lead to significant financial penalties.  Therefore, even if you believe that your message is exempted from CASL, it is recommended that you follow CASL’s requirements where practical. This is a matter of courtesy, and it also avoids liability if you inadvertently include elements that bring the message under the scope of the legislation. For example, even though UVic’s fundraising messages are not subject to CASL, they generally contain unsubscribe language.

UVic Resources

  •  CASL - Frequently Asked Questions
  •  CASL - Model Language
  •  CASL - Compliance Checklist
  •  Applying CASL to UVic Activities

External Resources

 For more information contact:

Chief Privacy Officer and Legal Counsel Michelle Manning 250-472-5080