As you shop online for electronic gadgets such as digital cameras and MP3 players, beware that more than half of European web vendors are not complying with EU consumer law.
These findings came from a new survey conducted by regulatory bodies in 28 European countries that looked at 369 sites selling electronics items.
‘Irregularities’ were found on 55pc of these sites, covering all sorts of non-compliance of EU consumer law, ranging from failure to display consumer entitlements on purchase to misleading the customer regarding their right to a full cash refund if goods were not of merchantable quality.
Ireland was included in the 28 EU countries examined, as were 15 Irish websites selling gadgets, games and similar products.
Out of these, six sites were found to have irregularities and will be followed up, said the National Consumer Agency, although they will not be releasing the names of these websites, according to RTE news.
The study was carried out at a time when consumers are looking for more value and are turning to the web to find good deals on electronic goods.
The European Commission said 150 million EU citizens (almost a third of EU population) have shopped online at some point and that the amount of electronics sales in 2007 alone was worth €6.8bn.
By Marie Boran