With the advanced and increased use of online media, online business is becoming a fast emerging trend. Every five in eight companies are operating online, conducting e-commerce business. But being functional online doesn’t mean you can escape legal matters.
There are various legal issues associated with e-commerce businesses as well. And if these issues are not taken care of in time, they can lead to serious problems for your business.
Described below are some of the common legal issues an e-commerce business faces.
If you are a company operated merely via a website, not being incorporated is a crucial problem. Any purchase and selling activity related to your products will be considered illegal and you can’t claim your right in case of any fraud and corruption.
Without incorporation, your business has no shelter.
Trademark Security Problem
Not getting your trademark protected is one of the main legal issues in the field of e-commerce. Since trademark is your company’s logo and symbol, the representation of your business all over the web, it must be protected. If you don’t secure it, it won’t take long before you’ll realize your trademark is being infringed upon. This is very common legal issue and can become a deadly threat to your e-business.
With the hackers on loose and cybercrime so common, trademark infringement of your business or by your business can be a serious legal matter and may hinder your business’s progress.
Copyright Protection Issue
While publishing content for your e-commerce website, using content of any other company can be a severe legal problem. This might mark an end to your e-business. There are many sites online which are royalty free and allow you to access their content and images. You may use those sites for creating web content for your business site.
Even if you unintentionally used copyrighted content, the other party can easily sue your business.
The Australian Consumer Law (ACL) governs all e-commerce transactions in Australia. Therefore, if you do not abide by the rules, you can get into serious law violation problems.
If your business fails to provide clear and complete description of the product, cost and purchase details, information about delivery i.e. when the customer will receive products and other information related to exchange and refunds, the ACL can impose penalties on your business.
When it comes to online businesses, privacy is the major issue that can create problems both for the business and customers. Consumers share information with businesses online and they expect the sellers to keep their information confidential. By just one minor mistake and leakage of valuable information of a customer, you’ll not only lose your potential customer but your image and reputation will become a question mark. Moreover, you’ll be subjected to serious legal problems according to Australian privacy laws.
If e-commerce businesses lead to exposure and advantages for businesses online, then it certainly has given rise to some legal issues too that can be avoided by keeping in mind the rules and laws framed by Australian Government.