This move is being talked about in order to reduce the risk of fraudulent reviews that could ruin the consumer market and damage legitimate businesses.
Online Platforms and the Digital Single Market Opportunities and Challenges fits all platforms and users can post product reviews. The proposal, which is dated may 25th,2016, states that the European Commission is exploring the theoretical possibilities of making online review outlets use government ID’s as online persona’s.
“It is recognized that a multitude of username and password combinations is both inconvenient and a security risk. In order to keep identification simple and secure, consumers should be able t choose the credentials by which they want to identify or authenticate themselves. In particular, online platforms should accept credentials issued or recognized by national public authorities, such as electronic or mobile IDs, national identity cards, or bank cards,” the proposal states.
Claims regarding that fake products reviews making it harder for consumers to purchase are the reasons for this proposal.
“Online ratings and reviews of goods and services are helpful and empowering to consumers, but they need to be trustworthy and free from any bias or manipulation. A prominent example is fake reviews,” the proposal continued.
Supporters of the proposal believe that making online platforms to allow EU citizens to use their real identities to log in to online accounts to be able to post reviews will help with fraudulent reviews of consumer products. This however won’t stop people from non-EU countries from logging in and posting the fake reviews. EU citizens would be throwing away they’re online privacy just to be able to buy the best products online. This action wouldn’t be able to stop people from just lying, while using they’re actual identity. Giving this as one of the only reasons underlying the proposal seem to be a little farfetched.
The current version of the proposal doesn’t seem to be passing through European Parliament, and has been said to be writing rather hastily, as it seems that all factors have not been weighed.
It seems to focus more on businesses and not consumer privacy. It also doesn’t outline any security measures to protect EU consumers. If this gets approved citizens of Europe would be offering information when logging in a review site that would offer up their personal identity information to anyone with the knowledge to take it.
“The European Commission and Andrus Ansip, Vice-President for the Digital Single Market on the European Commission and the man behind this proposal, will have to provide more details regarding the technical implementation of their plan,” Softpedia reported.
The privacy boosting European General Data Protection Regulation has come into effect recently, this proposal goes against what the EU is trying to do on a long term basis.
In 2011, the US started a process to implement a plan similar to this called Internet ID. In 2014 Michigan and Pennsylvania tested this plan and little was spoken about it ever since.