ACMA investigation highlights consent issues when purchasing email lists

A recent investigation by the Australian Communications and Media Authority into business loan company, AUSvance LLC, has highlighted potential pitfalls when using a list of email addresses purchased from a third party for marketing purposes.


The ACMA investigated AUSvance after receiving complaints from people who had received marketing messages from it. Although the company that sold AUSvance the email address list claimed that the list was ‘opt-in’ and ‘verified’, AUSvance did not seek proof of those claims. Subsequently, it was unable to demonstrate it had the consent of recipients to send them marketing messages.


As a result of the ACMA’s investigation, AUSvance has paid a $10,200 Infringement Notice. It has also stopped using the purchased list.

‘This is a common story for marketers,’ said ACMA Chairman, Chris Chapman. ‘Ultimately, sending marketing messages with consent is the responsibility of the business sending the message. Businesses need to make sure they have done their due diligence.’

The ACMA’s most recent e-marketing blog gives more information about what questions to ask when considering purchasing an e-marketing list.

If you receive a promotional email you believe may not comply with the Spam Act, you can report it to the ACMA by forwarding the message to You can also forward spam SMS to the Spam SMS service on 0429 999 888.

To opt out of receiving telemarketing calls and marketing faxes you can sign up to the ACMA’s Do Not Call Register [link] by calling 1300 792 958 or visiting

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