Consumer advice

ACCC launches two short films for Indigenous consumers

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission is launching key components of its strategy for Indigenous consumer protection, including two short films and its revamped Indigenous consumer hotline at an event in Darwin today.

The films are aimed at educating Indigenous consumers about their rights and focus on direct debit contracts and scams, and continue the ACCC’s important work in Indigenous consumer protection issues.

ACCC sweeps dating sites

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has joined an international initiative to protect vulnerable consumers by sweeping dating websites for misleading offers, unclear pricing policies or consumer contracts with unfair terms.

The web search is part of the International Consumer Protection and Enforcement Network (ICPEN)’s annual internet sweep, involving over 50 consumer protection agencies around the world.

Be smart - buy smart

In an endeavour to provide Indigenous consumers with information on their consumer rights, the Be Smart - Buy Smart booklet provides helpful tips and information about shopping rights and responsibilities under Australian Consumer Law.

It is part of a joint consumer awareness initiative by all state and territory consumer protection agencies in Australia, with support from the National Indigenous Consumer Strategy Reference Group.  

Compare unit prices to save at the checkout

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission is reminding consumers that they can save money on food-based grocery products by comparing unit prices before they buy.

“Unit pricing is a labeling system that shows standard units of measurement to help consumers easily compare the prices of products, regardless of their size or brand. Savvy shoppers should look for unit pricing on shelf labels, display signs and in newspaper and catalogue advertisements,” ACCC Acting Chair Delia Rickard said.

Drip pricing

Drip pricing is where a headline price is advertised at the beginning of an online purchasing process and additional fees and charges which may be unavoidable are then incrementally disclosed (or ‘dripped’).

EnergyAustralia ordered by consent to pay $1.2 million for unlawful sales tactics

The Federal Court has ordered by consent that EnergyAustralia Pty Ltd (EnergyAustralia) pay a penalty of $1.2 million for unlawful door-to-door selling practices in proceedings brought by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission.

The Court declared that EnergyAustralia, through the conduct of certain sales representatives acting on its behalf, made false and misleading representations and engaged in misleading and deceptive conduct while calling on consumers at their homes to negotiate agreements for the supply of retail electricity by EnergyAustralia.

ACCC encourages consumers to review their phone and internet plans

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission is urging consumers to review their phone and internet plans following the tabling of its Annual Telecommunications Reports for 2012-13 in Parliament.

“With the widespread use of included value plans in the telecommunications sector, we urge all customers to take the time to review their plans to see if they are getting the best deal,” ACCC Chairman Rod Sims said.

“Customers should consider asking service providers for a Critical Information Summary to make it easier to compare different plans on a like-for-like basis.”