DA guilty?

The Democratic Alliance (DA) has been accused of sending unsolicited e-mails to an address listed on the Direct Marketing Association of Southern Africa’s (DMASA’s) do not contact (DNC) list.

The bigger question is how the DA received this e-mail address. The e-mail address to which the unsolicited e-mail asking for donations was sent ([email protected]*******.com) was only used for the DMASA DNC list.

This can mean that the DA either received e-mail addresses from the DMASA, including those from the DNC list, or that the DMASA’s DNC list was compromised.

The person who highlighted this issue, Brendon McLean, told MyBroadband that he uses custom e-mails when signing up for sites which he is not sure he can trust. “I use their domain name as the username,” he explained.

“I signed up to add my cell phone number to the DMASA’s DNC list. At the time, I was getting a lot of SMS spam,” said McLean.

He added that he never signed up for any DA e-mails, and even if he did he would not have used the “dmasa” e-mail address.

DMASA responds

DMASA COO Alastair Tempest said that he is very concerned about this issue, but that they are not aware of any breach of their DNC list. He added that they definitely did not provide any e-mail list to the DA.

Tempest said that their DNC list is very secure, and that their service provider Computer Facilities have not alerted them to any possible security breaches.

He added that they received numerous complaints about the DA’s unsolicited SMS and e-mail messages.

However, because political parties are not bound by the Consumer Protection Act’s (CPA’s) guidelines on unsolicited marketing messages, not much can be done about it.

Tempest said that he is planning to contact the DA regarding its continued unsolicited SMS and e-mail campaigns to try to convince them to stop.

DA mum on the issue

MyBroadband contacted the DA regarding this issue, but the political party did not respond by the time of publication.

The DA also did not comment on whether they think it is acceptable to send unsolicited e-mails to South Africans.

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DA guilty?