CAN-SPAM Compliance – Let’s Make This Easy!

Amanda DeLuke

CAN-SPAM Compliance may seem daunting to follow. However, if you are able to remember the main requirements, you could save yourself from a hefty lawsuit.

As you know, we are not your legal counsel, so always refer back to your legal team to make sure you are maintaining proper compliance.

I can recall using acronyms in school to help remember certain steps or processes. Let’s give this a try in relation to CAN-SPAM Compliance.

Here are the 7 main requirements using the acronym CAN-SPAM:

Correct Headers

You must use accurate routing information (such as the “From,” “To,” and “Reply-To” fields) that correctly identify the person or business who is sending the message.


All messages must contain your valid physical postal address.

Can-Spam Compliance: Use Addresses


If recipients no longer wish to receive future communication, there must be an easy and clear way for them to do so in all messages sent such as an unsubscribe form or better yet a preference management form (to let subscribers decide what information they want to be sent).

Subject Lines

Make sure subject lines clearly reflect what the content of the message is. Do not use a deceptive subject line to entice more recipients to open the email.

Prompt Unsubscribe

All unsubscribe and opt-out requests must be honored promptly. You are allowed up to 10 business days to update your database with these requests. Also, be sure that these mechanisms are still functional at least 30 days after the message has been sent.


If a message is an advertisement, it must be clearly labeled as such.


If you use a third-party or other company to handle your email marketing, it is your legal responsibility to make sure they are also abiding by the CAN-SPAM law.

Knowing the laws and regulations can give you a sense of empowerment and put your mind at ease. Go ahead, hide this screen and see if you can remember the 7 main requirements using the CAN-SPAM acronym. No peeking!

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About the Author
Amanda DeLuke

As a Deliverability Specialist, Amanda helps with client sender reputation, abuse management, and internal deliverability process. When she is not busy at work, she enjoys playing the alto sax, mountain biking, and chasing after her identical twin boys.