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CAC observes Consumer Rights Day next Wednesday

Friday, March 10, 2017

KINGSTON, Jamaica (JIS) — The Consumer Affairs Commission (CAC) will be observing World Consumer Rights Day on Wednesday, March 15, under the theme ‘Empowering Consumers in the Digital Age’.
Speaking at a JIS ‘Think Tank’ yesterday, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the CAC, Dolsie Allen, said the agency will be hosting a week of activities from March 12 to 17 to highlight how consumers can protect themselves in an increasingly globalised and digitised world.
“Given the increased use of smart devices, many consumers’ private information is exposed to cyberworld and they do not know. We (CAC) want to evoke the consumers’ interest in the relevant information they need to safeguard themselves against these cybercrimes,” Allen said, as she explained the relevance of the theme.
She pointed out that the week of activities will begin with the National Consumers League (NCL) Church Service on Sunday, March 12 at the Phillippo Baptist Church, Spanish Town, commencing at 8:30 am.
The week continues with exhibitions and town hall meetings from Monday, March 13 to Friday, March 17.
Allen said schools and selected parish libraries islandwide will have displays on the theme and other consumer-related topics. Some of the libraries include Mandeville Parish Library; St James Parish Library, Montego Bay; Clarendon Parish Library; Kingston & St Andrew Parish Library, Tom Redcam Avenue; and St Thomas Branch Library, Morant Bay.
She said that on March 15, the CAC will be hosting an event at the agency’s head office located at 34 Trafalgar Rd, Kingston, and the Minister of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries, Karl Samuda, will deliver the day’s message.
“Messages will also be read at school devotions and shared with private-sector groups such as the Jamaica Exporters’ Association, the media and the National Parenting Association, among others,” Allen said.
She noted that the agency will use the week of activities to educate consumers about data protection, how the consumers’ information is being utilised in cyberworld, consumer privacy, identity theft and other pitfalls of technology.
“Every aspect of life involves technology – the bank, online shopping, credit card and making appointments – all involve sharing personal information. We want to ensure that the public is knowledgeable about what to do when accessing these cyber services and what to do if their information is exposed and used illegally or incorrectly,” Allen said.
She noted that the legislation is being amended to help protect the consumers from all illegal digital activities.
Allen appealed to consumers to take responsibility for their safety. “Be aware of who you share data with; scamming and identity theft is real and so too is digital footprint, so when you think you have deleted something, it still exists in cyberspace,” she said.