Feeds

Australian app inquiry launches

Aussies asked to think of the children ... and how much they spend by mistake

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

Australia’s Commonwealth Consumer Affairs Advisory Council (CCAAC) has kicked off its inquiry into apps, releasing the survey and an Issues Paper it will use to gather opinions and frame policy.

The inquiry was announced last month, when Assistant Treasurer David Bradbury said that the government wanted to investigate the ways in which apps were sold and marketed to consumers and assess the transparency involved.

"I understand that there are concerns about how some applications such as games are marketed, and that the marketing of these games could mislead consumers, including children, into making further purchases without knowing they will incur real costs,” Bradbury said at the time.

An Issues Paper has been released, and comments on the document are welcome until 31 January 2013.

The crux of the inquiry is whether punters can unknowingly empty their wallets by using an app. Paragraph 14 of the discussion paper states the problem as follows:

"Some stakeholders have raised concerns that the way apps and in-app features are marketed or supplied may be confusing or misleading and could entice consumers (including children) to access in-app features without knowing they will incur costs."

Other issues raised in the paper include the adequacy of the information being disclosed before and after app downloads; consumer experiences when downloading and using content; the level of disclosure on costs - before and after content is downloaded; and adequacy of existing measures to address any consumer concerns.

Legal recourse issues will also be looked at including the legal protections available to consumers, the adequacy of default settings to ensure consumers are making an active decision before incurring additional charges, the availability of ‘opt out’ features and the level of parental controls for app stores.

At the time of writing, around 18 hours after the Issues Paper went live with the rather natty interactive version you can find here, not a single comment had been published.

The CCAAC has also published a survey that Vulture South has completed and can report covers the same issues mentioned above.

Consultation on the Issues Paper is open until January 31st. No timeframe for a final report has been offered. &reg

Security for virtualized datacentres

More from The Register

next story
Spies, avert eyes! Tim Berners-Lee demands a UK digital bill of rights
Lobbies tetchy MPs 'to end indiscriminate online surveillance'
How the FLAC do I tell MP3s from lossless audio?
Can you hear the difference? Can anyone?
Inequality increasing? BOLLOCKS! You heard me: 'Screw the 1%'
There's morality and then there's economics ...
Google hits back at 'Dear Rupert' over search dominance claims
Choc Factory sniffs: 'We're not pirate-lovers - also, you publish The Sun'
While you queued for an iPhone 6, Apple's Cook sold shares worth $35m
Right before the stock took a 3.8% dive amid bent and broken mobe drama
4chan outraged by Emma Watson nudie photo leak SCAM
In the immortal words of Shaggy, it wasn't me us ... amirite?
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.