I have been claiming compensation from SMS and email spammers since I learned that under section 13 of Data Protection Act 1998 and section 30 of Privacy and Electronic Communications Regulations 2003 consumers are entitled to bring proceedings for compensation.
This is how to do it:
1) Send them this first notice and include a screenshot of the message or email
Unless they provide all the evidence you demand, you do not need to enter into conversation. If you do respond only ever communicate by email or letter.
Note that these spammers are mostly loan companies or debt management companies and often try to palm you off with the Financial Ombudsman Service. Their spamming is not, nor will ever be, a matter for the Financial Ombudsman Service as it is not a financial matter. Feel free to politely tell them this.
In **month and year that the spam was sent** the defendant sent an unsolicited promotional SMS message to the claimant. The defendant did not have clear and explicit permission to do so. The defendant was given ample time to provide evidence that their action was lawful and failed to do so. The claimant claims £394 compensation in respect of a tort committed by the defendant for acting contrary to Privacy and Electronic Communications Regulations 2003 section 22 and the Data Protection Act 1998 Schedule 2; and £70 for notices sent. The claimant is entitled to compensation under section 30 of Privacy and Electronic Communications Regulations 2003 and section 13 of the Data Protection Act.
5) Wait… You should receive a letter telling you that they will pay up. If not, when 28 days have passed since your court action was initiated, apply for a judgement in default.
Points to consider
- Stick to your guns – Companies will tell you that you are wrong. You’re not. They MUST prove that you gave them permission to send marketing messages.
- “Actually, you ticked a box on this other website” – unless that website belongs to THEM they have no right to process your data or send you marketing messages.
- Don’t be fobbed off with a small gesture of goodwill – The law says you are entitled to compensation. £394 plus £70 for further notices is reasonable.
- They usually settle out of court – So far all of the companies that I have initiated legal action against have paid before it goes to court, but even if it does the law is on your side; they have to prove that you gave EXPLICIT permission.