July 2, 2020 / 1:27 AM / in a month

Australia's Woolworths fined A$1 mln for spamming customers

July 2 (Reuters) - Woolworths Group Ltd has been fined A$1 million ($691,000) for more than five million breaches of anti-spamming law, Australia’s communications and media regulator said on Thursday.

The breaches over October 2018 through July 2019 involved sending marketing e-mails to consumers even after they had un-subscribed from its service, the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) said in a statement.

“Consumers claimed that they had tried to un-subscribe on multiple occasions ... but their requests were not actioned by Woolworths,” ACMA Chair Nerida O’Loughlin said in the statement.

“The scale and prolonged nature of the non-compliance is inexcusable.”

The regulator said the supermarket chain retailer had agreed to appoint an independent consultant to review its systems and report any other instances of non-compliance it finds.

The retailer, which last month said it had inadvertently underpaid staff, faces dwindling earnings as a result of coronavirus-induced restrictions on personal movement and business activity.

Its share price was up as much as 0.8% at A$37.18 as at 0054 GMT. ($1 = 1.4472 Australian dollars)

Reporting by Sameer Manekar in Bengaluru; Editing by Christopher Cushing

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