Do Not Call Registry: An easy guide for consumers

A screen capture of the Hoiio telephony app which has the SpiderGate software on it. Each time a call is made from the app, the user can check the number against the Do-Not-Call (DNC) Registry over the Internet. The user will be notified on his phone
A screen capture of the Hoiio telephony app which has the SpiderGate software on it. Each time a call is made from the app, the user can check the number against the Do-Not-Call (DNC) Registry over the Internet. The user will be notified on his phone within five seconds if he can proceed with the call. -- PHOTO: ST FILE 

A tuition agency has become the first company here to be charged by the Personal Data Protection Commission (PDPC) for violating the Do Not Call (DNC) Registry. 

Law Han Wei, 35, a director of Star Zest Home Tuition, and the company sent messages to mobile subscribers to market the services of its tutors between Jan 3 and 14.

Law and Star Zest were each fined $39,000 on Wednesday after pleading guilty to 13 of 37 counts that arose from this period, or $3,000 per charge.

The DNC Registry, which came into effect on Jan 2, allows consumers to opt out of and have greater control over the marketing messages addressed to their various phone numbers.

But even with the registry's launch, an estimated 630 organisations continue to text or call numbers listed on it without permission, with at least 3,700 complaints filed by the public thus far. Organisations can be fined up to S$10,000 per customer complaint and face the maximum penalty of S$1 million, 

Here are five things you need to know about the DNC Registry:

1. Consumers can register on any one of the three DNC registers - no voice call register, no text message register and no fax message register. You can also opt to be on all three registers.

2. There are three methods to register - via the DNC Registry website, SMS or through a toll-free number. Details on how to register by SMS or through the toll-free number are given at the bottom of this page.

3. Organisations such as banks and telcos who have an ongoing relationship with their users or customers are exempt from checking the DNC Registry when sending marketing messages on similar and related products.

4. Such exempt messages, however, contain an opt-out facility. Consumers who chose to opt out will stop receiving messages after 30 days.

5. Should you still receive messages after registering with DNC, PDPC encourages consumers to contact offending organisations  directly. You may also choose to lodge a complaint directly with PDPC, with the help of a checklist it provides.


To register for the DNC Registry by SMS: 

PHOTO: SCREENGRAB FROM WWW.PDPC.GOV.SG

To register for the DNC Registry by toll-free number 

PHOTO: SCREENGRAB FROM WWW.PDPC.GOV.SG