Consumer protection: Stronger consumer rules enter info force, fit for the digital age

Saturday 28 May marks the date of entry into application of the Better enforcement and modernisation Directive. Adopted in November 2019, these rules update the instruments available to address the challenges of digital markets. They will equip both consumers and competent authorities with stronger tools to enforce their rights, such as imposing stronger penalties or remedies against harm. Vice-President for Values and Transparency Věra Jourová said: “The new rules show once again the importance that Europe places on effective safeguards for consumers. They will ensure that consumers are shielded from unfair practices online as they are offline, making consumer rules fit for the digital age.” Commissioner for Justice, Didier Reynders added: “European consumers are entitled to the highest standards of protection, and those new rules are precisely delivering on this commitment. For instance, while searching for a product online, transparent information must now be provided by platforms about the way offers are ranked. This is to avoid misleading commercial practices. Access to individual remedies, as well as penalties for cross-border infringements will also be reinforced. It will ensure a just compensation to victims and a real dissuasion for perpetrators.” With a digital world in constant evolution, the Commission continues working to ensure that the legislation is fit for the future and gives equal protection to consumers, online and offline. Interested stakeholders can provide feedback on the Fitness Check of EU consumer law on digital fairness until 14 June. Today, the Commission has also published a study on “dark patterns”, interface designs aimed at tricking consumers into making certain choices. A factsheet with more information on the new rights introduced by the modernisation Directive is also available. More information on EU Consumer Law is available here.