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Monday, Mar 20, 2023


Govt sets up committees to scrutinise crypto ads, fake online reviews and ed-tech firms

The Consumer Affairs Ministry has formed three panels to form guidelines on advertisements and claims by Crypto exchanges, Ed-tech companies and fake reviews on e-commerce platforms.
In a bid to protect consumers from being the victim of exorbitant claims by advertisers from sectors like edtech and cryptocurrency, the government is planning to tighten the noose. To streamline guidelines on promotional claims by these companies and offer relief to the aggrieved consumers, it has now formed separate committees.

The Ministry of Consumer Affairs has formed three panels to form guidelines and/or FAQs on cryptocurrency, edtech companies and fake reviews that have become prevalent on e-commerce platforms, a senior government of India official has said as part of a media interaction.

According to Rohit Kumar Singh, Secretary, Ministry of Consumer Affairs, the committees have been formed with inputs from all industry stakeholders.

“We met representatives from all e-commerce industry stakeholders like companies, ASCI (Advertising Standards Council of India), industry bodies CII, FICCI, Assocham and others some ten days ago. This is to form guidelines to curb fake reviews on e-commerce platforms, which even companies want to get rid of. The guidelines will be formed within the next 60 days”, said Singh.

Citing a report by European Commission, he added that nearly 55 per cent of the companies operating in the region are suffering from fake reviews, which is an indication of the quantum of the issue.

A separate committee has been formed to control exorbitant claims made by edtech companies in their advertisement and promotional campaigns that is headed by Joint Secretary Anupam Mishra. While, the third panel - tasked with forming FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions) on cryptocurrency, which are heavily taxed. This committee is being headed by another Joint Secretary at the ministry Vineet Mathur, Singh said.

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