State law and the NAR code of ethics address your risks:
SECTION 30-2-50. Obtaining personal information from state agency, local government, or other political subdivision for commercial solicitation; penalty.
(A) A person or private entity shall not knowingly obtain or use personal information obtained from a state agency, a local government, or other political subdivision of the State for commercial solicitation directed to any person in this State.
(B) Each state agency, local government, and political subdivision of the State shall provide a notice to all requestors of records pursuant to this chapter and to all persons who obtain records pursuant to this chapter that obtaining or using public records for commercial solicitation directed to any person in this State is prohibited.
(C) All state agencies, local governments, and political subdivisions of the State shall take reasonable measures to ensure that no person or private entity obtains or distributes personal information obtained from a public record for commercial solicitation.
(D) A person knowingly violating the provisions of subsection (A) is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, must be fined an amount not to exceed five hundred dollars or imprisoned for a term not to exceed one year, or both.
HISTORY: 2002 Act No. 225, Section 1; 2003 Act No. 20, Section 2; 2017 Act No. 67 (H.3352), Section 6, eff May 19, 2017.
Effect of Amendment
2017 Act No. 67, Section 6, amended the section, extending the prohibition against knowingly obtaining or using personal information to information obtained from local governments and political subdivisions of the State.
Article 16 is intended to recognize as unethical two basic types of solicitations:
First, telephone or personal solicitations of property owners who have been identified by a real estate sign, multiple listing compilation, or other information service as having exclusively listed their property with another Realtor® and
Second, mail or other forms of written solicitations of prospects whose properties are exclusively listed with another Realtor® when such solicitations are not part of a general mailing but are directed specifically to property owners identified through compilations of current listings, “for sale” or “for rent” signs, or other sources of information required by Article 3 and Multiple Listing Service rules to be made available to other Realtors® under offers of subagency or cooperation. (Amended 1/04)
Definitions in state law:
SECTION 30-2-30. Definitions.
For purposes of this act, the following terms have the following meanings:
(1) "Personal information" means information that identifies or describes an individual including, but not limited to, an individual’s photograph or digitized image, social security number, date of birth, driver’s identification number, name, home address, home telephone number, medical or disability information, education level, financial status, bank account numbers, account or identification number issued by or used, or both, by any federal or state governmental agency or private financial institution, employment history, height, weight, race, other physical details, signature, biometric identifiers, and any credit records or reports.
"Personal information" does not mean information about boating accidents, vehicular accidents, driving violations, boating violations, or driver status, or names and addresses from any registration documents filed with the Department of Revenue as a business address which also may be a personal address.
(2) "Legitimate public purpose" means a purpose or use which falls clearly within the statutory charge or mandates of an agency, board, commission, institution, department, or other state entity.
(3) "Commercial solicitation" means contact by telephone, mail, or electronic mail for the purpose of selling or marketing a consumer product or service. "Commercial solicitation" does not include contact by whatever means for the purpose of:
(a) offering membership in a credit union;
(b) notification of continuing education opportunities;
(c) selling or marketing banking, insurance, securities, or commodities services provided by an institution or entity defined in or required to comply with the Federal Gramm-Leach-Bliley Financial Modernization Act, 113 Stat. 1338; or
(d) contacting persons for political purposes using information on file with state or local voter registration offices.
(4) "Medical information" includes, but is not limited to, blood samples and test results obtained and kept by the Department of Health and Environmental Control pursuant to Section 44-37-30.
HISTORY: 2002 Act No. 225, Section 1; 2003 Act No. 20, Section 1; 2003 Act No. 69, Section 3.II.
Posted by : Byron King on 9/12/18 (This information is only accurate as of 9/12/18. You must contact SCR for updates and changes to this information after 9/12/18 as laws and regulations may change over time. SCR 803-772-5206 or email info at screaltors.org)