Forbidden Message Categories for SMS and MMS in the US and Canada

Forbidden Message Categories for SMS and MMS in the US and Canada

Overview:


The following messaging use cases are not allowed on SMS or MMS in the United States or Canada. The below information applies to long code messaging with the rollout of the new A2P 10DLC system, in addition to short code and Toll-Free messaging. Lastly, we have also provided some suggested alternatives for conducting certain forbidden use cases.

Please note, there are some rules about message contents, even when your use case is not forbidden. For example, use of shared public URL shorteners is not allowed by US carriers and will result in filtering.

Please note, any use cases that violate Text Groove's Acceptable Use Policy are also not allowed on Text Groove's platform, regardless of number/sender type or destination country.

Forbidden Message Categories for SMS/MMS in the US/Canada:

Category
Examples
Notes
High-risk financial services
  1. Payday loans
  2. Short term high-interest loans
  3. Third-party auto loans
  4. Third-party mortgage loans
  5. Student loans
  6. Cryptocurrency
“Third-party” means originating from any party other than the one which will service the loan.
Third-party lead generation services
  1. Companies that buy, sell, or share consumer information
“Third-party” means originating from any party other than the one who is owed the debt. For example, a hospital could send messages regarding bills for its own patients, assuming they provided opt-in to receive that messaging.
Debt collection or forgiveness
  1. Third-party debt collection
  2. Debt consolidation
  3. Debt reduction
  4. Credit repair programs
“Third-party” means originating from any party other than the one who is owed the debt. For example, a hospital could send messages regarding bills for its own patients, assuming they provided opt-in to receive that messaging.
“Get rich quick” schemes
  1. Work-from-home programs
  2. Risk investment opportunities
  3. Pyramid schemes
This is different from outreach about employment as a result of compliant opt-in practices, messages from brokerages to their members, investment news alerts, or other investment-related messages.
Illegal substances
  1. Cannabis (United States)
  2. CBD (United States)
  3. Prescription drugs
Cannabis is federally illegal in the United States. Cannabis businesses will not be permitted to use SMS/MMS messaging in the US, regardless of message content.
CBD is federally legal, but is not legal in some US states, so US carriers do not permit messaging related to CBD.
Offers for drugs that cannot be sold over-the-counter in the US/Canada are forbidden.
Gambling
  1. Casino apps
  2. Gambling websites
Gambling traffic is prohibited in the US and Canada on all number types (Toll Free, Short Code, Long Code).

"S.H.A.F.T." use cases
  1. Sex
  2. Hate
  3. Alcohol
  4. Firearms
  5. Tobacco
While Tobacco traffic is prohibited on Toll Free, it is allowed on Short Code, or Long Code, as long as proper age gating procedures are in place.

Firearms and Alcohol traffic is allowed on Toll Free (US only), Short Code, and Long Code, as long as proper age gating procedures are in place.

Vaping-related traffic is prohibited.

My Use Case Is Listed As Forbidden. What Can I Do?

If your use case is listed above as forbidden for SMS and MMS messaging in the US, you will need to reach out to our team for more options should you want to utilize our platform. Our support team may be able to help you identify permitted use cases for your business. Please email support@textgroove.com with your inquiry and our team will assist you!

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