Short Message Service (SMS) Policy
- Applicability of SMS Policy
This SMS Policy applies to all Customers who transmit SMS messages (“SMS” or “SMS message”) through use of the Zultys Service. If you provide your own end users or clients/customers with the ability to send SMS through Zultys, for example as an ISV (Independent Software Vendor), you are responsible for the SMS activity of these users. You must ensure that any SMS activity generated by your users complies this SMS Policy, and as applicable, the Terms and Conditions. If you are a software or platform provider and Zultys Customer using Zultys’ Services in connection with your application or service, you must require your customers to adhere to these same requirements when dealing with their users and customers.
- Applicable Laws; Telecommunications Industry Guidelines/Standards
Pursuant to our SMS Policy, Customers that send SMS may do so only with the consent of the SMS recipient in accordance with applicable laws and any and all applicable telecommunications industry guidelines and standards (“Industry Standards”), including, but not limited to, the then-applicable CTIA Messaging Principles and Best Practices. Furthermore, Customers represent and warrant that all SMS sent by or through the Customer comply with applicable laws and Industry Standards with respect to content and the recipient of the SMS; accordingly, Zultys is not responsible for monitoring content or SMS recipients.
- Requirements for SMS
All SMS messaging transmitted via the Zultys Services, regardless of use case or phone number type (e.g., long code, short code, or toll-free) are subject to this SMS Policy, which covers rules and requirements regarding:
- Consent (“opt-in”);
- Revocation of Consent (“opt-out”);
- Sender Identification;
- Messaging Usage;
- Filtering Evasion; and
- Proper Consent
Consent cannot be bought, sold, or exchanged. For example, you are not permitted to obtain the consent of SMS recipients by purchasing a phone list from another party. Aside from two exceptions noted later in this Section, you must meet each of the consent requirements listed below in order to use the Zultys Service.
- Consent Requirements
- Prior to sending the first SMS, you must obtain agreement from the SMS recipient to communicate with them (“consent”): To obtain valid consent, you must make clear to the recipient they are agreeing to receive SMS of the type you are, or will be, sending. You must keep a record of the consent, such as a copy of the document or form that the SMS recipient signed, or a timestamp of when the SMS recipient completed a sign-up flow.
- If you do not send an initial SMS to that recipient within a reasonable period of time after receiving consent (or as set forth by applicable law or Industry Standards), then you will need to reconfirm consent in the first message you send to that recipient.
- The consent applies only to you, and to the specific use or campaign that the recipient has consented to. You cannot treat it as blanket consent allowing you to send SMS from other brands or companies you may have, or additional SMS about other uses or campaigns.
- Proof of opt-in consent should be retained as set forth by applicable law or Industry Standards after the end user opts out of receiving SMS.
- Alternative Consent Requirements: The Two Exceptions
Two scenarios where consent can be received differently are as follows.
- Contact initiated by an individual
If an individual sends a SMS message to you, you are free to respond in an exchange with that individual. For example, if an individual texts your phone number asking for your hours of operation, you can respond directly to that individual, relaying your open hours. In such a case, the individual’s inbound SMS message to you constitutes both consent and proof of consent. Remember that the consent is limited only to that particular conversation. Unless you obtain additional consent, you may not send SMS messages that are outside that conversation.
- Informational content to an individual based on a prior relationship
You may send a SMS message to an individual where you have a prior relationship, provided that individual provided their phone number to you, and has taken some action to trigger the potential communication, and has not expressed a preference to not receive SMS messages from you. Actions can include a button press, alert setup, appointments, or order placements. Examples of acceptable messages in these scenarios include appointment reminders, receipts, one-time passwords, order/shipping/reservation confirmations, drivers coordinating pick up locations with riders, and repair persons confirming service call times. You are responsible for retaining evidence of this type of consent; and SMS messages related to this type of consent cannot attempt to promote a product, convince someone to buy something, or advocate for a social cause.
- Frequency of Messages and Ongoing Consent
If you intend to send SMS messages to a recipient on an ongoing basis, then in conformity with applicable law or Industry Standards, you must confirm the recipient’s consent by offering them a clear reminder of how to unsubscribe from those messages using standard opt-out language (defined below). You must also respect the SMS recipient’s preferences in terms of frequency of contact. You also need to proactively ask recipients to reconfirm their consent as set forth by applicable law and Industry Standards.
- Identifying Yourself as the Sender
Every SMS you send must clearly identify you (the party that obtained the opt-in from the recipient) as the sender, except in follow-up messages of an ongoing conversation.
The initial message that you send to an individual needs to include the following language: “Reply STOP to unsubscribe,” or the equivalent using another standard opt-out keyword, such as STOPALL, UNSUBSCRIBE, CANCEL, END, or QUIT. Recipients must have the ability to revoke consent at any time by replying with a standard opt-out keyword. When an individual opts out, you may deliver one final SMS message to confirm that the opt-out has been processed, but any subsequent SMS messages are not allowed. A recipient must once again provide consent before you can send any additional messages.
- Prohibited Messages and Content
You may not use Zultys service to send any message that (1) is unlawful, harmful, abusive, malicious, misleading, harassing, excessively violent, obscene/illicit, or defamatory; (2) deceives or intends to deceive (e.g., phishing messages intended to access private or confidential information); (3) invades privacy; (4) causes safety concerns; (5) incites harm, discrimination, or violence; (6) is intended to intimidate; (7) includes malware; (8) threatens Consumers; (9) is sexually inappropriate or (10) does not meet age-gating requirements.
If you use the Zultys service to send messages in any way related to alcohol, firearms, gambling, tobacco, or other adult content, additional restrictions may apply. You are responsible for ensuring your messages comply with applicable law and Industry Standards, including age gating requirements.
- Evading Detection; Prevention Mechanisms
Customers may not use the Zultys Service or platform to evade Zultys’ or a telecommunications provider’s unwanted SMS messaging detection and prevention mechanisms. Examples of prohibited practices include:
- Content designed to evade detection. This includes intentionally misspelled words or non-standard opt-out phrases which have been specifically created with the intent to evade these mechanisms.
- Snowshoeing. We do not permit snowshoeing, which is defined as spreading similar or identical SMS messages across many phone numbers with the intent or effect of evading unwanted SMS messaging detection and prevention mechanisms.
- SMS Policy Violations
To protect the continued ability of all our Customers to freely use SMS messaging for legitimate purposes in accordance with applicable law and Industry Standards, we reserve the right to suspend or remove access to the Zultys’ Services and platform for Customers or Customers’ end users that we determine are not complying with the SMS Policy, or who are not following applicable law or Industry Standards with, or without notice, to the Customer, in Zultys’ sole and absolute discretion.