Consumer Protection Laws 2018 May Make eCommerce Companies More Liable to the Customers
The rising cases of e-commerce fraudulence and counterfeit with the customer’s interest are putting the high demand for amendment in laws that safeguard the consumer’s interests. In this scenario, the Consumer Protection Act 2018 may bring some tougher laws for the companies operating in digital domain which will make them answerable to everything happening on their platform that puts consumers at disadvantage.
There might come some tougher regulations demanding transparency on how these stores are using the consumer data and how they are protected. This upcoming step by the government will overhaul the three-decade-old legislation improvising the current scenario in e-commerce domain. After the laws are implemented, the companies will be held liable for the delivery of any defective good, fraudulent sale, or misuse of customer details.
The IT Act considers network service providers as only the intermediaries while the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion’s FDI guidelines consider the e-commerce platforms as a digital platform connecting the buyers with the sellers. If the new rules get implemented then the e-commerce companies will require submitting self-disclosure forms disclosing their business details. This will also necessitate them to get registered with consumer affairs department. However, as of now, the representatives of eCommerce companies like Amazon and SnapDeal have requested not to over-regulate this sector.
It might become tougher for the bundle service providers like travel portals as they might need to take the liability for the services provided to the customers. Hotel booking services, ticket booking, car booking and more needs to be verified by the service providers.
The lack of technological intervention and regulatory changes have inflated the number of customer complaints in recent times. While some companies are welcoming this new regulatory move by the government, others fear the overload coming on them. Let’s see what the future holds for the consumers and the eCommerce companies.