If the sight of a blizzard of unsolicited e-blasts filling your inbox makes you grit your teeth, mark down July 1, 2014 on your calendar.
That's the day Canada's anti-spam legislation goes into effect, the Conservative government revealed today.
Minister of Industry James Moore made the announcement, reiterating a commitment to "protect consumers from spam and other threats that lead to harassment, identity theft and fraud."
He added in his written statement that the law, Bill C-28, will also prohibit cellphone and text-message spam and help keep Canadians safe from scams, cyber attacks and so-called phising ruses, in which hackers obtain usernames, passwords and other sensitive information through fraud.
"Our government does not believe Canadians should receive emails they do not want or did not ask to receive," Moore said in a written statement.
Charitable organizations will be exempt from the new regulations, which was good news for Imagine Canada, the national umbrella for Canada’s charities. The organization released its own statement saying it was grateful it would be permitted to continue reaching out to potential donors electronically.
Under the new law, companies will still be allowed to send business-related messages within the firm or to other companies.
The new law will be enforced by the Competition Bureau, the Office of the Privacy Commissioner, and the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission.
It's estimated that spam costs the Canadian economy more than $3 billion per year.