As we know, SMS is one of the most valuable channels to connect with customers. With the rise in popularity of SMS as a channel, we're seeing a rise in spammers and businesses operating in unsupported categories as defined by the major wireless carriers. SMS traffic is highly regulated and as a result, there are categories of businesses using SMS that are not supported by wireless carriers.
Unsupported businesses primarily include age-restricted businesses or businesses without federal approval. If your business operates in one of the following categories, unfortunately, SMS may not be the right channel for you at this time. As defined by our acceptable use policy, your account will be subject to closure.
Forbidden Message Categories for SMS/MMS in USA/Canada
High-risk financial services
“Third-party” means originating from any party other than the one which will service the loan.
Third-party lead generation services
Debt collection or forgiveness
“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 message.
“Get rich quick” 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.
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.
Gambling traffic is prohibited in the US and Canada on all number types (Toll-Free, Mobile Numbers).
"S.H.A.F.T." use cases
While Tobacco traffic is prohibited Toll-Free, it is allowed on Mobile numbers, as long as proper age-gating procedures are in place.
Firearms and Alcohol traffic is allowed on Toll-Free, Mobile numbers, 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, your messages may face blacklisting by the carriers and your account may be blocked altogether.