Pizza Hut fined $2.5 million for spam

By AdNews | 16 May 2024

Pizza Pan Group Pty Ltd, trading as Pizza Hut Australia, has paid a $2,502,500 penalty for sending more than 10 million marketing messages in breach of spam laws across a four-month period.

An Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) investigation found that Pizza Hut Australia sent 5,941,109 texts and emails from January to May 2023 to customers who either had not consented or had withdrawn their consent to receive marketing.

Pizza Hut also sent customers 4,364,971 marketing messages without an option to unsubscribe.

Authority member Samantha Yorke said these significant failures caused frustration for people.

“Some of the customers involved had attempted to unsubscribe several times and received multiple messages after trying to stop them,” Yorke said.

"The public expects more from businesses who are using their data. They have a right not to be sent marketing messages if they haven’t consented or have chosen to unsubscribe.”

“The spam rules have been in place for over 20 years and there is simply no excuse for failing to uphold the rights of consumers. It is particularly disappointing when well-known businesses with large customer bases fail to meet their obligations in the way Pizza Hut has.”

The ACMA has also accepted a comprehensive three-year court-enforceable undertaking from Pizza Hut Australia committing the business to appoint an independent consultant to review its compliance with the rules and to make improvements where required. Pizza Hut Australia must also report regularly to the ACMA.

Yorke said that ACMA helps people who receive unwanted spam by cracking down on businesses that don’t comply with the direct marketing laws.

“The penalties for breaching can be very serious and all companies that conduct e-marketing should check their compliance systems are working effectively so they’re not spamming customers," she said.

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