E-hallmark for safe Net shopping

The Consumers Association, the Alliance for Electronic Business and the Direct Marketing Association have jointly launched a Government-backed “e-hallmark” scheme to encourage Internet shopping.

TrustUK uses a marque designed by DMA chief executive Colin Lloyd and tweaked by design group Fonda.

The image will be used in a similar way to the traditional Kite-mark. It is intended to allay fears that using a credit card over the Internet constitutes a security risk. Research has shown women are especially reluctant to shop on-line.

TrustUK will use an independent accreditation panel, monitoring codes of conduct to provide improved consumer protection. Members of organisations the Association of British Travel Agents and the DMA are entitled to apply the hallmark from this week.

Department of Trade and Industry Minister Patricia Hewitt backed the scheme’s launch on Tuesday.

In addition, Fonda has developed promotional material for the scheme.

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