Online merchants are being warned to include full contact details on their web sites or risk falling foul of the law and incurring fines.
IT specialists at law firm Shoosmiths pointed out that many e-retailers forget or ignore the need to include full company details, including the name and function of the business and how it can be contacted.
The Companies (Trading Disclosures) Regulations 2008 stipulate that any company operating a web site, even if it is not used for sales, must include such details.
Shoosmiths partner Michelle Sherwood advised e-commerce firms to conduct a web site review, and ensure that they provide details of an offline method of contact, for example by phone.
"The regulations aim to ensure that anyone dealing with a company via a web site knows its legal identity, its limited liability status, where in the UK it is registered, its paid up share capital (if relevant), and where its records can be inspected," she said.
"If the information provided on your web site is clear and unambiguous, and gives customers information equivalent to what they would obtain from physically entering a store, it should satisfy UK and European regulators."
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