Lawmakers Introduce Bill to Protect Consumers Making Online Purchases

Reps Jan Schakowsky (D-IL) and Gus Bilirakis (R-FL), Chair and Ranking Member of the Consumer Protection and Commerce Subcommittee of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, introduced legislation to combat the online sale of stolen, counterfeit, and dangerous consumer products. The Integrity, Notification, and Fairness in Online Retail Marketplaces for Consumers (INFORM Consumers) Act (H.R.5502) directs online platforms that allow for third-party sellers of consumer products to verify the identity of high-volume third-party sellers, which will prevent organized retail crime. The bill will also ensure that consumers can verify basic identification and contact information for high-volume third-party sellers of consumer products on online marketplaces. The INFORM Consumers Act directs online marketplaces to verify these sellers by acquiring the seller’s government ID, tax ID, bank account information, and contact information. High-volume third-party sellers are defined as vendors who have made 200 or more discrete sales in a 12-month period amounting to $5,000 or more. The legislation has received support from a diverse array of organizations including Consumer Reports, the Buy Safe America Coalition, the Coalition to Protect America’s Small Sellers, and the National Association of Manufacturers.

Schakowsky Introduces Bill to Protect Consumers Making Online Purchases