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
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
ASIC Commissioner Simone Constant said, ‘ASIC has taken multiple actions to protect retail investors from high risk offers and business practices that may be unfair, inappropriate or result in poor outcomes. Our more proactive approach to identifying and disrupting emerging risks and harms is in response to the rapid pace of change we have observed in recent years. Today’s report and our recent consumer warning campaign are reflective of this.
Read More ASIC Report Released on Online Trading Providers and Increased Risk to Retail Investors
New mandatory industry codes are being developed by the Australian Government to outline the responsibilities of the private sector in relation to scam activity, with a focus on banks, digital communications platforms, and telecommunications providers. A short survey is also available for members of the public who wish to participate in the consultation process and provide information about their experience with scams, rather than provide a written submission.
You can read the Consultation Paper and how to make submissions here. Submissions are due by 29 January 2024.
Read More Have Your Say on the Scams Mandatory Industry Code Survey
Below is the introduction for the Consumer Policy Research Centre’s latest report ‘Seeing Green – prevalence of environmental claims on social media‘. The report itself can be found as a free PDF here and CPRC’s brief summary of the report can be found on their website here. “Striving towards improved environmental outcomes is a worthy…
Read More CPRC and ADM+S Release Latest Green Consumer Report
“While we found that Coles may have an incentive to consolidate some of its milk volumes in the eastern states, this was unlikely to lead to a substantial lessening of competition,” Mr Keogh said.
“Coles will likely continue to face financial incentives to stock and support branded milk from other processors, due to the higher retail margins it earns on these products.”
In addition, the ACCC found that Coles’ commercial incentives to consolidate its milk supply would exist with or without the transaction due to the significant excess capacity at the Laverton and Erskine Park facilities.
Read More “[U]nlikely to result in a substantial lessening of competition”, ACCC Okays Coles Milk Plant Acquisitions
The total penalties, ordered by the Federal Court, are the highest imposed for resale price maintenance in Australia. Resale price maintenance (also known as RPM) occurs when a supplier of goods specifies a minimum price below which a reseller must not supply, offer to supply, advertise, or display those goods for sale.
“The ACCC submitted to the Court that this level of penalty was appropriate given the seriousness, duration and extent of Techtronic’s conduct. It sends a strong signal to deter others from engaging in RPM, and should serve as a warning for all other businesses,” ACCC Deputy Chair Mick Keogh said.
Read More ACCC Applies Record Penalty for “seriousness, duration and extent” of Techtronic’s Retail Price Maintenance
“The proposed coordination will increase AEMO’s ability to manage the scheduling of outages, providing greater security for the supply of electricity over the next two summer periods, which are forecast to be challenging,” ACCC Deputy Chair Mick Keogh said.
Due to concerns that this kind of coordination and information sharing between competitors can reduce competition in the supply of electricity and the acquisition of maintenance services as well as create information disparities within the broader electricity market, the ACCC has imposed a series of conditions for this authorisation.
Read More Coordination Within Electricity Industry Authorised
The mandatory Code for Scams consultation paper announced by the Federal Treasury today sets out some proposals to tackle the scams crisis, however the final regulation must land on clearer stipulated standards and consumers’ rights to reimbursement of scams losses from banks if standards are not met.
“Mandatory and enforceable codes are a step forward, but consumers must be able to seek reimbursement easily, and there needs to be clarity on the high standard expected of banks and their liability,”
Read More Mandatory Code for Scams Promising But More Regulation Needed
Consumers are often overwhelmed by the amount of energy information available to them. They are unsure who to turn to, or where to start. This means most consumers are on ‘first base’ in their energy journey.
Read More Energy Cost, the Environment and the Importance of Keeping Consumers Informed
Businesses are trotting them out left and right these days, but it’s not clear who gives them the authority to do that, since you already have a right to the three Rs without promising to keep matters confidential.
Non-disclosure agreements (NDAs) effectively keep problems with a product or service a secret so other customers can’t know that it has a history of problems.
“The ACCC has made clear that non-disparagement clauses can breach unfair contract terms provisions.
“Again this comes back to the imbalance of power and information between consumer and business, and why we need strong, enforceable consumer protections.”
Read More Non-Disclosure Agreements, Unfair Contracts and Consumer Rights
The Proposed Conduct relates to the cooperation between Virgin Australia and Air NZ on trans-Tasman services (on routes that Virgin Australia does not operate), including the ability for Virgin Australia to codeshare on Air NZ operated services which contain pricing provisions that may otherwise trigger the prohibition against resale price maintenance. Cooperation on commercial arrangements between Virgin Australia and Air NZ in relation to frequent flyer programs, lounge access, and joint corporate customer offers are conditional upon these codeshare arrangements.
Closing date for submissions on interim authorisation is 18 December 2023.
Read More Consultation on Virgin Australia and Air New Zealand Trans-Tasman Services