Tuesday 11th of February is Safer Internet Day. The purpose of Safer Internet Day is to continue to raise awareness about online safety by encouraging everyone to help create a safer and better internet.
As many of you know the internet plays a critical role in both the lives of individuals and businesses. You only have to look at the demise of the yellow pages book which used to be the go-to source for a plumber or a cleaner or an accountant. It has now been replaced by a quick google search or a social media question.
There was once a time where you could run and grow a business without an internet presence, but this is no longer the case. Most businesses have websites or social media accounts that informally advertise their products. This presents a great opportunity but also a significant risk.
Many businesses' websites or social media pages have been crafted by the owner without a thought of whether the content complies with their obligations.
For example, we regularly see guarantees advertised or statements made that could well be misleading or deceptive.
This may place the business and the business own in breach of the Australia Consumer Law obligations. Further to this, these statements may put the consumer in danger.
If you run a business here are 3 simple tips to protect you from a claim under Australian Consumer Law.
- Be Honest
This may seem like a simple one, however it is often forgotten. If you tell the public exactly what you do and the qualifications you have you are off to a great start.
- Get you content checked
Far too often we see clients who do not think their website, or their social media page is advertising. They do not think that what they say warrants being checked, but it does. Penalties are serious and precaution is always best practice.
- Data is Important
The internet is a moving feast. People’s privacy is critical and you need to be aware that rules are changing. Australia has the Privacy Act which dictates people's rights. If you collect data you need to comply with the Privacy Act and your core obligations. If you do business in Europe or have people buy goods from Europe, you need to consider whether you comply with the GDPR. People’s data and information needs to be treated with the upmost importance.
If you're not sure if your business complies with the obligations under the Australian Consumer Law, the Privacy Act or other domestic and international obligations, please make contact with James Frank at firstname.lastname@example.org.
This is not legal advice.