Consumer watchdog takes action against Vodafone

Online customers need to be informed of their rights to cancel contracts

The Competition and Consumer Protection Commission has taken action against Vodafone Ireland

The Competition and Consumer Protection Commission has taken action against Vodafone Ireland

 

The Competition and Consumer Protection Commission has taken action against Vodafone Ireland after it found that the telecoms firm was not complying with consumer law in relation to providing customers with information on cancelling contracts.

Under European regulations governing distance selling, consumers have the right to cancel contracts taken out online or over the phone within a set timeframe, and traders must provide that information prior to the purchase being made.

Vodafone said it will update its website with the correct information, and customers who bought goods or services online in the past 12 months and now want to cancel their contract can check the website to find out how to do so.

“Consumers are increasingly buying online and over the phone; our recent buying online research found that 55 per cent of adults surveyed had purchased goods or services online,” said Isolde Goggin, Commission Chair. “Reflecting the nature of buying online and over the phone, consumer law provides important protections, particularly in relation to cancellation. Consumers should be aware of the rights they have.”

Vodafone isn’t the only company to fall foul of the Consumer Rights Directive. Eircom, Meteor, Three and UPC were also found to have breached their obligations under different provisions of the directive, with the watchdog taking action against the companies in June.

The Consumer Rights Directive came into force in Ireland in June 2014.