Ministry Imposes New Regulations for Labelling of Spam - International Law Office

International Law Office

E-commerce - South Korea

Ministry Imposes New Regulations for Labelling of Spam

August 08 2002


The Revised Regulations regarding the Facilitation of Use of Information and Communication Networks and Protection of Information Act took effect on July 11 2002.

According to the regulations, commercial emails (ie, spam) must be entitled "Advertisement" where appropriate. Individuals or entities that fail to label their emails accordingly may be subject to a fine of up to W5 million.

The law regards spam of a sexual or violent nature, or which relates to drug use or other criminal activity, as being unsuitable for juveniles (ie, those under the age of 19). It must thus be entitled "Adults only".

Spam must also be entitled 'Adults only' if it contains material that is deemed injurious to juveniles under the Youth Protection Law, or if it discloses website addresses which contain any of the aforementioned materials, whether in the form of codes, symbols, letters, images or sounds.

Spam must outline the ways in which recipients can decline further emails (in both Korean and English, regardless of whether they are sent to Korean or foreign addresses).

The words 'Advertisement' and 'Adults only' may not be inserted randomly within spam in order to evade recipients' mail filtering programs. Similarly, misleading sentences and greetings such as "re: Reply to your email" or "How are you doing?" must not be inserted in spam subject headings.

All spam must include a genuine email address and business telephone number so that the recipient can identify the sender.

In the event that the Spam Mail Complaint Centre (www.spamcop.or.kr) or the Personal Data Protection Centre (www.cyberprivacy.or.kr) receives a complaint about illegal spam, the Ministry of Information and Communication will impose an injunction on first-time offenders, and a fine on second-time and repeat offenders.

Any individual or entity that continues to send spam to a recipient who has already declined such mail will be subject to an immediate fine.

The ministry has posted the revised regulations (as well as instructions for blocking spam) at www.spamcop.or.kr and www.mic.go.kr. In addition, the ministry is taking steps to supervise the transmission of spam more closely by organizing a task force in conjunction with the Korea Information Security Agency.


For further information on this topic please contact Bong Hee Han or Jung Wook Cho at Woo, Yun, Kang, Jeong & Han by telephone (+82 2528 5200) or by fax (+82 2528 5228) or by email (bhhan@wooyun.co.kr or jwcho@wooyun.co.kr).



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