26 November 2020
BEUC welcomes Commission fines on Teva and Cephalon for agreement to delay marketing of generic sleep drug
The European Consumer Organisation (BEUC) welcomes the European Commission’s decision today to fine Teva and Cephalon 30 and 30.5 million euros respectively for agreeing not to market a cheaper generic version of Cephalon's drug for sleep disorders, modafinil, in Europe for six years. The “pay for delay” agreement, which the Commission has found to violate EU antitrust rules, allowed Cephalon to charge European patients and healthcare systems higher prices for the drug in the six year period before Teva finally marketed its generic alternative.
26 November 2020
Two years ago, on 27 November 2018, seven consumer organisations of the BEUC network, in a coordinated action, filed GDPR complaints against Google. The complaints came on the back of a report from Norwegian consumer group Forbrukerrådet, which showed how Google collects users’ location data notably through the features ‘location history’ and ’web & app activity’ and uses various tricks (‘dark patterns’) to ensure users have these features enabled on their phones. The company also does not give consumers straightforward information about what this effectively entails.
16 November 2020
Our work areas
The internet has come to be a central element of the commercial, personal and professional lives of European consumers. While the digital environment grows bigger and more important, it must be remembered that consumers deserve as much protection online as they do offline.
For consumers to reap the benefits of the digital era, the protection of people’s privacy and personal data is at the forefront of our work. We also strive to ensure consumers have guaranteed and affordable access to the internet. We work to ensure that the openness and neutrality of the internet is protected. We advocate to strengthen consumer rights so that consumers for example enjoy competitive, fair, clear and transparent contracts. Besides this, without cybersecure digital tools and services consumers’ physical security and safety is at risk.
Despite its borderless character, consumers are confronted with content access restrictions depending on their nationality or country. Our work is to ensure consumers have access to a vibrant market of affordable legal offers for music and audiovisual content across Europe.
E-commerce shops, booking sites and social media play a pivotal role in people’s lives but very often consumers are harmed because of scams, unsafe products sold online and misleading practices. We therefore aim to make platforms more responsible for their offers and services.
Artificial intelligence is changing our societies. It evokes big promises to make consumers’ lives easier and better but comes along with many concerns. Consumers are at risk of becoming subject to discriminatory treatment and non-transparent decisions. Our aim is to ensure that the development and use of AI is adequately regulated and that consumers have strong rights so that they are protected and can reap the benefits of the digital transformation of our societies.
- Ensure consumers enjoy a high level of personal data protection and online privacy.
- Ensure the Telecoms Single Market delivers to consumers’ expectations on fair competition, better pricing, stronger consumers’ rights and affordable and secure access to the full internet.
- Make online platforms responsible for the products and services they offer. Those who benefit financially from illegal activities need to be accountable and have obligations too.
- The introduction of a horizontal cybersecurity law that would lead to connected products meeting certain minimum requirements before they hit the market.
- Put in place a strong set of AI consumer rights for instance on accountability, transparency and control of AI.