Bell Canada slapped with $1.3 million fine for violating DNCL Rules

The CRTC announced today that Bell Canada has paid a $1.3 million penalty for violating the National Do Not Call List Rules.

The government found that between January and October of this year, call centres acting on behalf of Bell Canada solicited consumers who had registered their numbers on the National Do Not Call List (DNCL) or who were or should have been on Bell Canada’s internal do not call list.

The purpose of the National Do Not Call List (DNCL) is to allow Canadians to opt out of receiving unwanted telemarketing calls, however, critics and members of the public have been complaining for years that firms, such as Bell, continue to solicit them over the firm.

The CRTC’s investigation found that complaints from Canadians were valid and that, in contravention of the rules, telemarketers hired by Bell Canada were calling Canadians on the DNCL list in order to sell its television, telephone, wireless and Internet services.

“All telemarketers must respect the wishes of Canadians who have registered their telephone number on the National DNCL or requested that a telemarketer include their number on its internal do not call list.” said Andrea Rosen, the CRTC’s Chief Telecommunications Enforcement Officer.

In a separate investigation, the CRTC also found that Bell Canada had used automated calling devices to communicate with its prepaid mobile customers without obtaining their prior express consent. Bell Canada did not admit fault, however, the firm has said stopped making the calls and, for reasons that were not disclosed, made a monetary payment of $266,000 to the Institute for Information and Systems Engineering at Concordia University.

Bell issued a written statement later in the day saying it acknowledged the calls had been placed on its behalf to numbers registered on the National Do Not Call List (NDNCL) and Bell’s Internal Do Not Call List.

Consumers who have registered on the National Do Not Call List can file a complaint about a telemarketer by calling 1-866-580-DNCL (3625) or visiting www.lnnte-dncl.gc.ca.

Discuss Bell’s violation of the DNCL rules in Digital Home’s Canadian Internet and Landline discussion forum.

Comments

4 Responses to “Bell Canada slapped with $1.3 million fine for violating DNCL Rules”
  1. MIke says:

    Couldn’t happen to a nicer company.

  2. GC says:

    Well, I have to say, since last weeks announced $500,000 fine the phone has been a lot quieter. This $1.5 million dollar fine should help as well, at least against the calls originating in Canada. The ones that originate in the US or overseas are another story.

    I think the next step for the DNCL is for Canada and the US to make an agreement that callers practicing violations of the DNCL cross borders can be fined as well. That should take care of most of the other calls for both us and the people in the US as many of their telemarketing calls originate here to get around their DNCL restrictions as well.

  3. dj says:

    Hilarious….The funniest part is when they say this Bell has issued a statement and confirmed that none of the violations were from a Bell-operated call centre and they have “terminated its relationships with two telemarketers and suspended several others due to non-compliance with the Unsolicited Telecommunications Rules.”

    Well guess what Bell gives the independent contractors their lists to call to promote their products. They also outsource to companies who pay the workers virtually nothing and pocket all the profit themselves. Bell does this because in the long run it is much cheaper then having the employees work for them directly and it also lets them deny accountability when stuff like this happens. Telus and Rogers do the same. Trust me even if Bell ran it the same things would happen.

  4. X says:

    Shouldn’t Rogers be next in line to get fined?? Hassling their own subscribers seems to be part of their business model.