Consumer Affairs Authority (CAA) Issues Gazette to Regulate Online Sellers and Digital Platforms
The Consumer Affairs Authority (CAA) has taken steps to regulate the activities of online sellers and sellers operating on digital platforms. In a special gazette notification, the CAA has outlined directives aimed at safeguarding consumer rights and ensuring their protection.
The CAA chairman, Shantha Niriella, emphasized the importance of these measures to protect consumers. The gazette notification requires e-commerce entities and platform operators involved in marketing and selling goods to adhere to specific conditions during the three stages of a transaction: pre-purchase, purchase, and post-purchase.
During the pre-purchase stage, e-commerce entities and platform operators must conduct business with fairness, adhering to honest advertising and marketing practices. They are prohibited from engaging in deceptive or anti-competitive practices that could mislead customers.
Furthermore, the gazette emphasizes that customers should be given cooling-off periods and the right to cancel orders when necessary. This provision aims to provide consumers with flexibility and protection in their online purchases.
To safeguard privacy and data protection, the CAA stipulates that e-commerce entities and platform operators must refrain from deceptive practices when collecting and utilizing customers’ personal data. They are required to adopt lawful, transparent, and fair practices in handling customer information.
During the post-purchase stage, e-commerce entities and platform operators are obligated to assist customers in addressing any potential safety issues related to the goods sold. Furthermore, these platforms must ensure that all relevant safety requirements are disclosed to consumers.
The CAA’s efforts to regulate online sellers and digital platforms are driven by the objective of promoting consumer welfare and ensuring a safe and transparent e-commerce environment. By setting these guidelines, the CAA aims to create a level playing field for consumers and foster trust in online transactions.