The Federal Trade Commission and Spain’s Agencia Española de Protección de Datos (AEPD) today signed a bilateral Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to promote enhanced cooperation and information-sharing on spam enforcement activities. Officials from both agencies will cooperate to address the problem of illegal spam. FTC Chairman Deborah Platt Majoras and AEPD Director Jose Luis Piñar Mañas signed the MOU at a ceremony in Washington, DC.
The MOU is a “best efforts” agreement intended to enhance cooperation between the two agencies – it is not legally binding and does not alter either country’s existing protection laws. The AEPD is Spain’s data protection authority. Since Spain’s anti-spam law took effect last year, the AEPD also has authority to conduct spam investigations.
The FTC continues to promote international cooperation on spam and other consumer protection issues. In July 2004, the Commission signed a similar MOU with the United Kingdom and Australia. In October 2004, the FTC, the AEPD, and other enforcement agencies from countries around the world met in London to develop greater international enforcement cooperation against illegal spam. Under the “London Action Plan,” 26 agencies from 19 different countries, along with numerous private sector representatives, have agreed to use best efforts to share information about spam enforcement, participate in investigative training sessions, and undertake joint education and enforcement projects. With their MOU, the FTC and the AEPD will strengthen the links that they have developed both bilaterally and through the London Action Plan.
The Commission vote to approve the MOU and publish the accompanying Federal Register notice was 5-0.
Copies of the Memorandum of Understanding and the Federal Register notice are available from the FTC’s Web site at http://www.ftc.gov and also from the FTC’s Consumer Response Center, Room 130, 600 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20580. The FTC works for the consumer to prevent fraudulent, deceptive, and unfair business practices in the marketplace and to provide information to help consumers spot, stop, and avoid them. To file a complaint in English or Spanish (bilingual counselors are available to take complaints), or to get free information on any of 150 consumer topics, call toll-free, 1-877-FTC-HELP (1-877-382-4357), or use the complaint form at http://www.ftc.gov. The FTC enters Internet, telemarketing, identity theft, and other fraud-related complaints into Consumer Sentinel, a secure, online database available to hundreds of civil and criminal law enforcement agencies in the U.S. and abroad.
Elena Gasol Ramos
Bureau of Consumer Protection
(FTC File No. P035303)