Opinion: Truth or dare

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Opinion: Truth or dare
For every fair dinkum website out there in cyberspace there must surely be ten…a hundred…a thousand which are plainly dodgy.

But the ACCC is going to give it a go anyway.

You have to admire their courage, and I guess, if somebody is at least trying to stamp out the dodgy ones then some who were considering a career in misleading online trading might think twice.

But, given how many dodgy dealers manage to survive in the physical world of bricks-and-mortar businesses, and how much easier it is to open up shop online, policing them seems like an endless and thankless task.

There are sure to be some who slip through the ACCC’s nets (pun intended) and anyone who’s been a victim of online fraud isn’t going to be in the mood to excuse them because they were too busy to catch every last prankster.

If you got burned, you’ll probably be doing a lot more due diligence of your own.

The real losers are the honest online resellers who can’t avoid being tarnished by the bogus brigade.

You won’t be seeing a huge expose on the nightly current affairs show about these honest traders.

No sir, you’ll be seeing the dodgy traders, the ones which got swept up by the ACCC, and the ever-fearful public will have their basest fears reinforced once more – online is bad, the Internet is dangerous, they’re all out to steal your money, just stay away. That’s if you didn’t already get a virus.

Way back at the turn of the century the Internet was likened to the wild west of America, a lawless place where you shoot first, grab the loot and run away fast with whatever you can grab.

Do we really have to endure this situation indefinitely? Is there no way to police the online space and make it safe for ordinary folk to trade?

More strength to the ACCC for trying, but you can’t help feeling they’re a long way from the end of this particular battle.

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