Clock is ticking for Facebook, Twitter and Google to comply with EU consumer rules – HAYES
The three leading social media companies are under pressure from the EU to protect consumers from scams, Brian Hayes MEP has reported.
“EU consumer authorities and organisations have received a growing number of complaints from consumers who have been targeted by fraud or scams when using social media websites, as well as having been subject to certain terms of services that do not respect EU consumer law.
“As a result of that, EU consumer authorities and the European Commission have met with Facebook, Twitter and Google to discuss their proposed solutions. The companies in question will finalise detailed measures on how to comply with the EU regulatory framework in April.
“We’ve all been exposed to scams on our social platforms. Some of these include:
- Scams involving payments taken from consumers
- Subscription traps where consumers are offered to register for a free trial but are not given clear and sufficient information
- Marketing of counterfeited products
- Fake promotions like “win a smart phone for 1 €” have proliferated over social media which were in fact a true contest but entailing a hidden long term subscriptions for several hundred euros per year.
“Social media companies also need to take more responsibility in addressing scams and fraud happening on their platforms, and the fact that their HQs are based in the U.S shouldn’t exempt them from complying with European law. Given the growing importance of online social networks it is time to make sure that our strong EU rules, that are there to protect consumers from unfair practices, are complied with in this sector.
“I am hopeful that Facebook, Twitter and Google take responsibility to protect their network users and that their proposals to deal with this issue are sufficient enough not to lead to an enforcement action.”