Poland’s consumer authority has imposed a 5.3-million zloty (EUR 1.14 million) fine on Vinted, a Lithuanian 3.5-billion-euro platform for trading second-hand clothing and items.
Vinted “had provided inadequate information regarding the conditions of access to the money earned by sellers on the platform and the possibility of opting out of a paid feature protecting buyers”, Notes From Poland, a news website, reported on May 11.
“The terms of service only indicated that money from the e-wallet could be transferred to your bank account at any time,” the Polish regulator, the Office of Competition and Consumer Protection (UOKiK), said in its ruling on May 10. “The message about the need to verify identity came too late – after the transaction had already occurred.”
“Although the company allows transactions without “buyer protection”, nowhere is it described how to use such a method,” said UOKiK. “Buyers have to figure it out on their own.”
Vinted – the app of which has been downloaded over 5 million times on Google Play – pushed back against the accusations in a statement published by Polish media on May 11, vowing to appeal the regulator’s decision.
Vinted said it would contest the decision.
“We have cooperated fully with UOKiK during the proceedings to find solutions to address concerns, and for this reason, we are disappointed with the decision,” the company said, adding it had now increased the amount of information about the verification process.
On May 11, Lithuania’s State Data Protection Inspectorate (VDAI) said it was conducting an inspection of Vinted over its processing of personal data.
Meanwhile, the State Consumer Rights Protection Authority (VVTAT) informed that it had not formally opened an investigation, but asked for the company’s explanations, after which the data protection authority would decide on further actions. (LRT/Business World Magazine)