Owner of OPSM, Sunglass Hut and Oakley fined $1.5m for spamming

Owner of OPSM, Sunglass Hut and Oakley fined $1.5m for spamming

Photo: Oakley, via Facebook.

Luxottica, the eyewear retailer that owns the brands OPSM, Oakley and Sunglass Hut, has paid a fine of more than $1.5 million for sending more than 200,000 marketing messages in breach of Australian laws against spamming. 

The retail group joins a long list of companies that have breached these laws, including Commbank (ASX: CBA), Kmart, Doordash, Uber, Ticketek, mycar Tyre & Auto, BetDeluxe and Outdoor Supacentre.

Over the past 12 months businesses have paid more than $12.7 million in spam and telemarketing penalties following investigations and enforcement from the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA).

ACMA found that Luxxotica sent customers 91,231 marketing emails without a functional unsubscribe facility, while even more texts and emails - 112,348 - were sent to customers who had unsubscribed from such messages.

The spamming messages concerned took place between November 2022 and May 2023.

Authority Member Samantha Yorke said it was particularly egregious to keep spamming customers after they had gone to the effort to unsubscribe.

"Businesses must keep up their side of the bargain and stop sending these messages when customers ask them to," Yorke said.

Approximately half of the emails sent without the option to unsubscribe were order confirmations and password reset messages that also included or linked to clearly commercial content, such as how to view and purchase Oakley products and a free shipping promotion.

“Once emails include this kind of marketing content they are commercial under the spam rules and must include the option to unsubscribe from further messages.

“It is unacceptable to include advertising or promotional material if a customer has no way to opt out of receiving these messages,” Yorke said.

In addition to the financial penalty, the ACMA has also accepted a comprehensive three-year court-enforceable undertaking from Luxottica committing it to appoint an independent consultant to review its compliance with the spam rules and make improvements where needed. Luxottica must also report regularly to the ACMA.

“We strongly urge all companies engaging in e-marketing in Australia to check their compliance systems are working and effective to prevent spamming consumers,” Yorke said.

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