Data Retention

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When was the last time you were certain that your data wasn’t being collected, shared, tracked or used in unfair business practices? A recently released joint research report from the Consumer Policy Research Centre (CPRC) and the University of New South Wales (UNSW) ‘Singled Out: Consumer understanding – and misunderstanding – of data broking, data…

Read More No Say, No Knowledge, No Control: Personal Data in Australia

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This report documents the nature of some of the more troubling consumer manipulation practices currently occurring in Australia. It explores how targeted advertising affects people who gamble, consume alcohol, are experiencing financial stress, and how it affects children and young people. Each case study describes potential consumer harm and rights violations and goes on to include evidence from the ‘Xandr File’ about the nature of data that is routinely traded for targeted advertising about each of these groups.

A brave, bold and strong response to this issue is necessary, and long overdue. 
A wide range of measures could be implemented to curb this practice

Foreword co-signed by Reset, CHOICE, and CPRC

Read More Report Released, “Australians for Sale: Targeted Advertising, Data Brokering and Consumer Manipulation”

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New research from CHOICE has revealed 65% of people don’t trust businesses to use their data responsibly and in their best interest –  an increase of 25% from 2022. 

“It’s no surprise more people don’t trust companies to use their data responsibly. Over the past year we’ve seen the terrible consequences data breaches can have for those affected by them, including at Medibank and Latitude,” says Senior Campaigns and Policy Advisor Rafi Alam.

Read More 65% of People Don’t Trust Business to Use Their Data Responsibly: CHOICE

Consumers International Global Congress; Nairobi, Kenya 06-08 December 2023; Building a resilient future for consumers; supporting partners COMESA Competition Commission and Competition Authority of Kenya

The Consumers International Congress 2023, held in beautiful Nairobi, Kenya, kicked off its first day with a stellar consumer protection agenda. Officially opened by the Deputy President of Kenya, His Excellency Rigathi Gachagua, E.G.H, the theme of building a resilient future for consumers was well and truly alive through the panel discussions and the conversations throughout the day. Below are some of the highlights from an action-packed Day 1!

Read More Fair, Safe and Sustainable – Day 1 of Consumers International Global Congress

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Digital platforms with significant market power can use practices like bundling or tying of products, pre-installation and default settings to limit customer choice or deter innovation from competitors.
“Australians increasingly use digital platforms for work, study and play and can benefit from their wide range of interconnected products and services. While the size and scale of digital platforms alone does not raise concern, there is a risk that this expansion may be driven by a desire from digital platforms to entrench or extend their market power,” Ms Cass-Gottlieb said.

Read More Expansion of Digital Platforms Demonstrates “critical need for regulatory reform”

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“eSafety and indeed the wider community, expect that all online services, should be taking all reasonable steps to prevent their services from being used to store, share and distribute this horrific content and that’s what these standards are intended to achieve.”

Read More Australia’s eSafety Commissioner Opens Draft Industry Standards to Public Consultation

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This month Consumers International’s (CI) update on the digital world covered some interesting developments and research in the consumer world including CHOICE’s recent article on facial recognition technology (FRT) used in half of Australia’s stadiums (found here), and the recent Members Connect series on building consumer trust in generative AI, whose panel included ETDA Thailand and the BEUC.

But perhaps the most exciting updates were the ones from the United States of America and the European Union.

Read More Consumers International Digital Update: Cyber Trust Mark and Personalised Pricing

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Virtual Private Networks or VPNs are a method by which people can more securely use and access public internet connections, reduce some communication costs, and bypass internet censorship. The privacy and protection of personal information is an important selling point of VPNs and one that was used to sell Onavo Protect in the Google and…

Read More Meta Companies Penalised $20m for Onavo Protect VPN’s Misleading Claims

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The ACCC has highlighted a range of harms to consumers and small businesses occurring across social media services, including excessive data collection practices, lack of effective dispute resolution options, prevalence of scams, lack of transparency for advertisers and inadequate disclosure of sponsored content by influencers and brands.

Read More ACCC Social Media Report Finds Consumers and Small Businesses Require More Protections