Kmart fined $1.3 million for sending 200,000 marketing emails to people who unsubscribed

ACMA chair says no excuse for disregarding privacy. All e-marketing businesses should comply with rules.
09 November 2023
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Kmart, an Australian retailer, has been fined $1.3 million for sending over 200,000 marketing emails to people who had already unsubscribed. 

The Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) launched an investigation after receiving consumer complaints. The investigation revealed that technology and procedural failures caused this significant mistake. 

ACMA had previously warned Kmart about potential issues with its consumer marketing. 

According to ACMA the retailer breached spam laws for nearly a year between July 2022 and May 2023.

ACMA chair, Nerida O'Loughlin, expressed disappointment in Kmart's lack of action to address the compliance issue. She said "Kmart was given more than enough notice it may have a compliance issue and it should have done more to address its problems before we had to step in and investigate.” 

Spam laws exist to protect people from unwanted commercial emails and text messages. O'Loughlin emphasised that big brands should respect people's privacy and wishes. Businesses conducting e-marketing must review their processes to ensure compliance. 

Kmart acknowledged the error and is actively working to improve its systems. Additionally, the retailer has agreed to hire an independent consultant for the next two years to ensure adherence to spam rules and make necessary improvements.

- CyberBeat


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