Consumers

ACCC urges caution with DIY vehicle maintenance

Around 120 Australians have died as a result of do it yourself (DIY) car maintenance accidents since 2000, while many hundreds have been hospitalised due to injuries, and the ACCC is warning consumers to take extra care when repairing their vehicles.

The ACCC has developed a safety campaign which includes a video explaining the correct procedure for common DIY car maintenance tasks to help raise awareness about the associated dangers.

Monthly average losses to NBN scams almost triple in 2019

Australians are losing more money to NBN scams, with reported losses in 2019 already higher than the total of last year’s losses.

Consumers lost an average of more than $110,000 each month between January and May this year, compared with around $38,500 in monthly average losses throughout 2018 – an increase of nearly 300 per cent.  

“People aged over 65 are particularly vulnerable, making the most reports and losing more than $330,000 this year. That’s more than 60 per cent of the current losses,” ACCC Acting Chair Delia Rickard said.

Allegations Sony breached consumer law for PlayStation games

The ACCC has instituted proceedings in the Federal Court against Sony Interactive Entertainment Network Europe Limited (Sony Europe) for making false or misleading representations to Australian consumers on its website and in dealings with Australian customers of its PlayStation online store.

The ACCC alleges that from around September 2017, Sony Europe told consumers seeking a refund for faulty games that it did not have to provide refunds for games that had been downloaded, or if 14 days had passed since purchase.

Know your obligations when selling disability goods & services

The Competition and Consumer Act 2010 (CCA) and the Australian Consumer Law (ACL) provide a number of obligations on businesses, including not-for-profit businesses, when selling goods and services to consumers with disability or to participants in the National Disability Insurance Scheme. These laws help businesses protect their reputation, as well as protect vulnerable consumers.

GSK and Novartis misled consumers with Voltaren Osteo Gel claims

The Federal Court has accepted admissions by GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Healthcare Australia Pty Ltd (GSK) and Novartis Consumer Health Australasia Pty Ltd (Novartis) that they breached the Australian Consumer Law by making false or misleading representations in the marketing of Voltaren Osteo Gel and Voltaren Emulgel pain relief products.

GSK and Novartis admitted that from January 2012 to March 2017,  they marketed Osteo Gel as being specifically formulated and more effective than Emulgel in treating osteoarthritis related pain and inflammation.

ACCC opposes TPG-Vodafone merger

The ACCC has decided to oppose the proposed merger between TPG Telecom Limited (ASX: TPM) and Vodafone Hutchison Australia Pty Ltd (ASX:HTA).

Australia already has a very concentrated mobile services market, with the three network operators, Telstra, Optus and Vodafone, having over 87 per cent share. Similarly, the fixed broadband market is concentrated, with Telstra, TPG and Optus having approximately 85 per cent share.