According to Ilonka Badenhorst, managing executive at Waspa, unsolicited direct marketing messages may create frustration for the recipient, especially if they are unable to identify the originator of the message. Consumers can now visit the Waspa Codes Platform and enter the number to obtain more information on the sender of the marketing message.
“This will make it easy to identify where the SMS came from, although of course, the platform will only contain information about service providers that are registered with Waspa. If the sender is identified, consumers will have the additional peace of mind knowing that they are communicating with a reputable player that is bound by the Waspa Code of Conduct,” she explains.
“If the company that sent the SMS is registered with Waspa, their contact details will be provided, allowing the consumer to contact them directly to obtain more information on the originator of the message, to request to be removed from the database or to lodge a complaint.”
The Codes Project is an extension of Waspa's Do Not Contact (DNC) initiative, explains Badenhorst, which is a list that consumers can add their number to, in order to avoid unsolicited SMS advertising. Waspa members engaged in direct SMS marketing campaigns are required to check the DNC list on a weekly basis.
She adds that in a situation where the organisation sending the messages fails to comply, the consumer can then contact Waspa directly.
“It is worth noting that the Consumer Protection Act and the Protection of Personal Information Act contain specific provisions regulating direct marketing and that Waspa's Code incorporates all of the requirements of these laws. Moreover, this code is binding on members of Waspa and any companies sending messages via a Waspa member.”