Monthly commercial law update: Top 5 developments in February

Monthly commercial law update: Top 5 developments in February

February saw some interesting developments in the commercial arena. There were tantrums following a toddler hack and a marketing company was fined for disturbing the slumbers of innocent people.

Here is a round-up of our Top 5 developments:

Consumer protection: Throwing the toys out the pram—manufacturer liability for unfair terms

Electronic toy manufacturer, Vtech, was recently criticised for reportedly changing its terms and conditions in response to a hack to try and absolve itself of responsibility.

Calum Murray, Partner and Emily Featherstone, Associate at Kemp Little say that when drafting consumer-facing terms, commercial lawyers should keep in mind the guidance that is available from the CMA and other regulators, such as the Information Commissioner. They should also maintain the right balance of power between trader and consumer. Terms which fail to do so are most likely to be challenged, and ultimately may fail to protect the trader in any way if set aside by a court.

Data protection: ICO issues fine of £70,000 for nuisance calls

The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) has issued marketing company Direct Security Market Ltd with a monetary penalty of £70,000 after the firm was found to have made nearly 40,000 nuisance phone calls, many of which were made in the middle of the night.

The penalty notice features details of the type of complaints the ICO received in relation to the company, among which was that of a 72-year-old complainant with a heart condition who received a call while sleeping.

The ICO, acting within its mandate as provided by the Data Protection Act 1998 (DPA 1998), s 55A, is entitled to serve a person/company with a monetary penalty if it is satisfied that there has been a serious contravention of the requirements of the Privacy and Electronic Communications (EC Directive) Regulations 2003, SI 2003/2426. The Regulations prohibit transmitting or instigating communications comprising recorded matter for direct marketing purposes by means of an automated calling system.

The monetary penalty comes the same week as

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