Are you texting on the right side of the law?
That's not just a slogan worth remembering for drivers, as it has become increasingly clear that the internet has brought with it the need for responsibility as maintained by legislation and federal guidelines. Your text messaging services should be responsive, yes, but as we said before, it also needs to follow the law and avoid harassing customers in ways that might result in hefty penalties—maybe even $1 million worth.
That's exactly what seems to have happened to a debt collection agency that falsely claimed it was a law firm as it tried to solicit payments from debtors via text. According to an official post on the matter on the Federal Trade Commission's blog, the actions of this agency violate the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act by not clearly demonstrating who they are and what the purpose of their messaging is, among other important concerns.
"Regardless of the means you choose — mail, phone, text, or something else — the law applies across the board," the author of the post writes. "Having trouble meeting the statute's requirements in a particular medium? Then think twice about using it for that purpose."
That's something that an answering service of any kind can take to heart as well. Offer some sort of statement as to who you are and your legitimacy before delving into sensitive matters, and always be sure you're operating legally. It doesn't take much to lose a person's trust forever, or be suddenly the target of a government action due to negligence.