Industry standards for HELP and STOP for Canada short codes

Per Twilio’s Acceptable Use Policy, your company is required to comply with the wireless carrier compliance rules, industry standards, as well as applicable law, in the use of any Twilio-provided short code.  To comply with industry standards, the application you use to manage your Canadian short code messaging campaign must be built to respond to HELP and STOP reply messages from recipients of the campaign (your recipients) in certain ways and with certain information.The industry standards for Canada short code HELP and STOP message content can be found on the Canadian Wireless Telecommunications Association (CWTA) website found here.   As a courtesy, below are some examples of STOP and HELP messages.


STOP Message Guidelines

A compliant response is required whenever users text either STOP or ARRET to your short code, regardless of whether the user was subscribed to the program previously. Example:

Short code: You are unsubscribed from {Campaign Name} Alerts, no more msg will be sent. Reply HELP for help or {source of help 1}. Std msg&data rates may apply.

Whenever an end user texts a non-supported keyword, your short code is required to respond as follows:

End user: (Invalid Keyword)
Short code: { Campaign Name } Alerts: Invalid keyword, please try again. Std msg&data rates may apply.


Managing Opt-Out Requests

Unlike on long codes, Twilio does not manage opt-out requests for short codes. Your short code must independently manage subscription lists and requests from end-users to re-opt in.

A key compliance requirement for text messaging campaigns is allowing recipients of your text messages to opt-out of receiving messages by sending the keyword STOP to your short code.


HELP Message Guidelines

A compliant response is required whenever users text the words HELP, INFO, or AIDE to your short code, regardless of whether the user is subscribed to the program. Example:

End user: HELP, INFO, or AIDE

Short Code: {Campaign Name} Alerts: Help at {source of help 1} or {source of help 2}. Std msg&data rates may apply. {Message frequency}. Reply STOP to cancel.

*These messages have not been formatted to fit within 136 characters*

These guidelines are based on industry standards for Canada short code service. We recommend that your review the full set of industry standards at the CWTA’s website.  You should expect that your short code campaign will be audited for compliance with industry standards.  Nonetheless, please note that each carrier reserves the right to suspend short code service for any user at any time, so compliance with the above guidelines is not a guarantee against suspension of service by a carrier.

In addition to the industry standards, there may be compliance requirements under Canadian law, including the Canadian Anti-SPAM Law (CASL), depending on the nature of your text messaging campaign.  The specific legal compliance requirements will depend on the details of your text message campaign, and you should consult with your legal counsel to ensure that your text messaging campaign complies with the wireless carriers standards, industry standards, and with the law applicable to your campaign.

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