Friday, 29 October, 2021

Restore people’s trust in e-commerce

Restore people’s trust in e-commerce

During the coronavirus pandemic when people could not or were not allowed going outside to carry out day to day dealings including purchasing daily necessities, online shopping was considered an alternative. Under this, people were required to place orders for things they need via digital media and they had to pay the price only after receiving the things at their doorsteps. A good number of online shops came forward to give the service. People began to build a sort of trust in the system. E-commerce was seen as a prospective sector of trade and commerce.

A number of fraudsters under the cover of shady e-commerce companies began taking undue advantage of people’s trust and started unhealthy business practices, with the ulterior motive of making fabulous fortune overnight at the cost of gullible clients. Media report that more and more e-commerce swindlers are surfacing now. More than a dozen of cheats operating ponzi schemes are already under the scanner of the authorities after the alleged fraudulent practices of certain e-commerce companies like Evaly and E-orange surfaced. The unscrupulous acts of a handful of scammers will have ruinous impact on the nascent e-commerce sector and hinder its development.

The positive development in this respect is that the government is determined to establish discipline in the sector and find a sustainable solution to the problem. As the first step, they are going to set up a regulatory body to monitor the e-commerce sector. Commerce Minister Tipu Munshi hinted that the government is also thinking over amending the Digital Security and Money Laundering Act to ensure legal action against the fraudulent organisations. It is a matter of hope and consolation for the victims of the scammers that the authorities are also exploring way and means to compel the swindlers to refund customers’ money they squeezed with the false promise of selling them things at cheaper rates.

However, refunding the clients’ money is not going to be that easy because, while assets of certain fraudulent companies are tangible, those of others have simply vanished in the void. Despite that, the steps that the authorities are going to take are likely to restore, at least partially, the confidence of the aggrieved persons and help the e-commerce sector flourish again. People should also remain cautious about the tricksters and must not be swayed away by false promises of the scams.