Cyprus law provides for certain localisation and disclosure requirements with respect to online purchases of digital services and content. These digital services and content include streaming and video-on-demand, such as movies and series, music, as well as in-app purchases in mobile apps. The applicable framework transposes relevant EU directives and primarily serves to protect consumers.
Under Cyprus law, sellers of digital content need to adhere to disclosure requirements regarding the conclusion of the contract with the user (such as terms of sale). Such disclosure may include, amongst others, providing the user with information on the languages offered for the conclusion of the contract, the governing law of the contract and a refund policy. The user must be provided with the requisite information in a clear manner and at the appropriate time in the course of the transaction, depending on the structure of the online interface leading to the transaction.
Certain of the information that sellers of digital content must provide will need to be provided in one of the official languages of Cyprus (Greek or Turkish), unless certain conditions apply. From a consumer law perspective, sellers of digital content and mobile apps would need to provide information to users that includes the following:
(a) particulars of the seller entity
(b) contact details and information on available support
(c) pricing, inclusive of taxes
(d) complaint handling policy
(e) information on a right to withdraw from the transaction
(f) a reminder of the existence of a legal guarantee and the existence of after-sales services and support and commercial guarantees
(g) any relevant interoperability of digital content with hardware and software
(h) the possibility of having recourse to an out-of-court complaint and redress mechanism, to which the seller is subject, and the methods for having access to it.
Beyond the information that sellers of digital content must include in their terms of sale or ahead of the transaction with the user, certain information must be made available at times. Such information includes the location and registration number of the seller entity, contact details allowing swift and direct, as well as information on VAT registrations.
Additional rules and restrictions apply for providers of audiovisual media services, such as video streaming platforms.
Overall, providers of digital services and digital content must ensure they adhere to applicable Cyprus law requirements for their online contacts, transactions and disclosures. Infringements may lead to regulatory investigation and potential sanctions.
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