The Consumer Rights Bill is due to be brought into force soon, it is currently making its way through Parliament. If you sell goods to consumers this will have an impact on your business which you need to start thinking about now.
The Consumer Protection (Amendment) Regulations 2014 allows consumers who have been victims of misleading or aggressive trading practices, to seek redress from traders by bringing their own private actions in the civil courts. The new rights came into force on 1st October 2014.
The Committee of Advertising Practice (CAP) published guidance to companies advertising official services or documents on "copycat" websites, i.e. websites that are not the official government channel for the services or documents. They advise the operators, among other things, to avoid using the term "official" in the name of the website or when describing its services.
Public Sector Contracts and Tendering
The Cabinet Office's Cyber Essentials security controls will be mandatory for central government contracts advertised after 1st October 2014 that involve the handling of personal information or the provision of certain technical products and services. Suppliers who are bidding for contracts must comply with the controls.
Thomson Reuters has launched a set of indices to measure the performance of European companies' ratings for environmental, social and corporate governance practices.
The UK Corporate Governance Code sets out standards of good practice in relation to board leadership and effectiveness, remuneration, accountability and relations with shareholders. All companies with a Premium Listing of equity shares in the UK are required under the Listing Rules to report on how they have applied the Code in their annual report and accounts.
From 1st November 2014 a license from the Gambling Commission is needed to advertise remote gambling facilities in Great Britain.
Other Reputational Updates
Suspicious Activity Reports
The National Crime Agency has published guidance for firms on the circumstances when a case relating to a suspicious activity report (SAR) can be closed. From 1st October 2014, SARs requesting consent that are missing the reason for suspicion or fail to identify the nature of the criminal property can be closed without further engagement from the UK Financial Intelligence Unit.
The European Commission and the 'Article 29 Working Party' have published further information on their approach to the right to be forgotten following the European Court of Justice's decision in Google Spain SL and Google Inc v Agencia Española de Protección de Datos (AEPD) and Mario Costeja González, Case C-131/12.