Ministry warns against online shopping

In the warning made by the Ministry of Commerce, “Shopping should be done by checking whether there is information such as the seller’s trade name, address, fixed telephone, MERSIS number, ETBIS registration, trust stamp on the website where shopping is considered.”

The Ministry of Commerce made some warnings to citizens in order to prevent consumers from being victimized by people who want to make malicious and opportunistic in distance sales made through the internet and telephone.

In the written statement made by the Ministry, it was pointed out that phenomena such as developments in technology, digitalization, and the development of internet infrastructure have led to changes in shopping habits and consumers to turn to shopping with distance contracts established by distance communication tools instead of traditional methods.

In the statement, it was stated that distance sales, which have advantages and conveniences provided to both sellers and consumers in terms of time, space and price compared to traditional shopping methods, are more preferred especially during the new type of coronavirus (Covid-19) period and the transaction volume has increased significantly.

The statement emphasized that although such sales bring many conveniences, from time to time, malicious and opportunistic sellers, who are not aware of their legal obligations, victimized consumers by selling products that are not in stock and cannot be supplied within the legal delivery period of 30 days, and it was noted that after the product prices were collected, it was seen that the withdrawal requests for refunds for the products that were never delivered or not delivered were not met, and even consumers were victimized by not finding an interlocutor to whom they could convey their requests.

In the statement, it was reported that many victimizations were experienced especially in purchases made through non-corporate websites and social media channels, even mobile phone applications, and in purchases made with payment methods such as payment at the door without bank account ownership information.

What consumers should pay attention to

In the statement, the Ministry’s warnings to consumers in order to prevent victimization in shopping with the distance method were listed as follows:

“If it is decided to shop on the internet or by phone, a short and general preliminary examination of the seller on search engines and, if necessary, examining complaints will give an idea. One of the advantages of the distance method to consumers is that it provides the ease of researching the price and qualities of the goods or services planned to be purchased from many channels. For this reason, learning the approximate price of the goods or services in other channels and making comparisons, approaching low prices or discounts that seem unrealistically attractive will prevent most victimization. Shopping should be done by checking whether there is information such as the seller’s trade name, address, landline phone, MERSIS number, ETBIS registration, trust stamp information on the website where shopping is considered. If it is necessary to check the site name in case the website is a fake or imitation site, using the ‘internet site information query’ screen of the Information and Communication Technologies and Communication Authority will prevent most victimization.”

What to do in case of victimization

Despite paying attention to all these issues, it is possible for consumers to apply to the Consumer Arbitration Committees for disputes under 10 thousand 390 liras related to distance contracts and to the Consumer Courts for disputes exceeding this amount, the statement reminded that the ministry conducts audits regarding the sellers that cause consumer victimization.

In the statement, it was pointed out that administrative sanctions were imposed for the violations detected in the inspections, and the following were recorded:

“Sales and marketing methods that include deceptive and misleading statements or unfair commercial practices are examined by the Advertising Board within the Ministry and criminal complaints are made to the Chief Public Prosecutor’s Offices regarding criminal acts within the scope of the Turkish Penal Code No. 5237. In this context, in the period between 2014 and October 2020, when the Law No. 6502 on Consumer Protection entered into force, a total of 216 million 68 thousand 467.08 lira administrative fines were imposed for the contradictions detected as a result of the audits carried out in 75 companies that sell by distance method.”

Source: www.dunya.com

Lasiad

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