The Electronic Commerce (EC Directive) Regulations 2002

The purpose of the Electronic Commerce (EC Directive) Regulations 2002 is to encourage better use of e-commerce and boost consumer confidence by clarifying the rights and obligations of businesses and consumers. If you run a business online or through email orders, you must ensure you comply with these regulations.

Please note that the following is for information purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice.

Who do these regulations apply to?

The EC Directive applies to anyone who:

Why should I comply with these regulations?

The EC Directive exists not only to protect the end user but to protect you, the service provider.

If you fulfil the criteria set out in the EC Directive regulations you will be protecting yourself against end users of your website:

In the most extreme case you may be issued with a Stop Now Enforcement Order if your failure to comply harms the collective interest of consumers. If you do not comply with this order you may be held in contempt of court and may face a fine or imprisonment.

What do I need to do?

General Information

Provide the following information clearly, directly and permanently on your website.

Electronic Contracts

If you allow customers to place orders online you must notify them of the following prior to the order being placed:

Once the order has been placed you must immediately acknowledge receipt of the order by email.

Commercial Communications

If you send electronic communications, such as email newsletters:


The full text of the Electronic Commerce (EC Directive) Regulations 2002 is available here.

Further helpful documents, including FAQs, are available here.

Alison Chaffey

By Alison Chaffey

Alison is Ballyhoo's Office Manager, responsible for keeping the business running smoothly and moving towards bigger and brighter things.