The South African Constitution Bill of Rights includes the right to privacy, everyone has the right to privacy, which includes the right to have privacy through - unsolicited communications in the marketing of any goods and services.
• The Consumer Protection Act (CPA) establishes National norms and standards relating to consumer protection,
• It further seeks to improve standards of consumer information, prohibit certain unfair marketing and business practices,
• To promote responsible consumer behavior and to promote a consistent legislative and enforcement framework relating to consumer transactions and agreements.
• To protect the rights of consumers
• In terms of Section 11 of the CPA-
“(1) The right of every person to privacy includes the right to-
(a) refuse to accept;
(b) require another person to discontinue; or
(c) in the case of an approach other than in person, to pre-emptively block, any approach or communication to that person, …direct marketing”
• Section 11(3) read with Regulation 4 (3-5) of the CPA enjoins the National Consumer Commission (the NCC) with a responsibility to establish or recognize as authoritative a registry in which any person may register a pre-emptive block.
• The CPA has conferred the right to consumers to restrict unwanted direct marketing through a pre-emptive block or by requesting the marketer to discontinue any approach or communication.
• Sec 12 (2) went further to give the Minister the power to prescribe the times during which direct marketing should not happen:
• Sundays and public holidays (Public Holiday Act, 1994)
• Saturday before 09h00 and after 13h00
• All other days between 20h00 and 08h00 the following day
To ensure that South African enjoys this right, the NCC has established an easy-to-use technology solution known as the Opt-Out Registry System (OORs). The system will allow consumers who have registered pre-emptive blocks with the NCC to block unwanted direct marketing communication aimed at them. This is a registry in which any person in the Republic may register a “pre-emptive block”, either generally or for specific purposes, against any communication that is primarily to direct marketing.
How can one register?
• Consumers need to have a valid email address and their ID number.
• Use your name or names as they appear on your ID book.
• Upon registration, consumers receive an email notification confirming their registration.
• An agent from the NCC will verify the information provided during registration before approving a profile.
• Once activated, the consumer receives another email notification with username and password.
• Consumers can log in and register their pre-emptive block (what is known as Opting-Out).
• Consumers can modify their information as and when there is a need.
• Consumers can amend their pre-emptive block options anytime.
• Every amendment will be effective 30 days from the date on which it was registered.
• Non-South African residents in the republic can register.
• A grace period of 30 days at most will be allowed before their details are updated on the
• Consumers who do not have email addresses can call the NCC’s contact center and have their profiles created.
• Visit the NCC’s url: https://eservice.thencc.org.za for an easy-to-follow process.