Senders of junk faxes face cut-off

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 18 July, 1998, 12:00am
UPDATED : Saturday, 18 July, 1998, 12:00am

Tougher action against senders of junk faxes was proposed by the Government yesterday.

A code of practice was proposed that would mean that senders would have their line disconnected for 14 days after five complaints and be permanently cut off after 10.

The code would also make phone companies set up 'not-to-call' databases of customers who were refusing some or all junk faxes.

The Office of the Telecommunications said junk faxes 'cause inconvenience and financial loss' and released a survey showing that in the two years to June 1997 Hongkong Telecom had received 185,000 complaints about unsolicited fax advertisements.

One junk faxer drew more than 3,000 complaints and was not cut off once.

It said that advertisers had a strong incentive to send adverts by fax as they did not need to pay for local calls, but difficulties in defining 'unsolicited advertisements' in law made it difficult to ban them.

It said legislation would only be considered if the code failed.

Comments must be received by September 17.