Wider ASA Powers Means Online Advertisers Will Face Stricter Regulations

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The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) will have powers to monitor and regulate online advertising.

For additional information regarding Ford & Warren or to contact the law firm, please visit forwarn.com

A business advertising online will need to ensure that the contents of the website comply with the ASA's CAP Code (Code of Non-broadcast Advertising, Sales Promotion and Direct Marketing).

Historically, the ASA's powers to regulate advertising related to mediums such as television and newspapers/magazine and other more traditional forms of advertising such as billboards.

The ASA will regulate online advertising whether undertaken on social websites belonging to third parties or whether owned by a company promoting its own product. Farhat Mahmood from Ford & Warren Solicitors' Intellectual Property Litigation department explains:

"A business advertising online will need to ensure that the contents of the website comply with the ASA's CAP Code (Code of Non-broadcast Advertising, Sales Promotion and Direct Marketing).

"In particular the CAP code provides that advertisers should ensure that their advertising is not misleading, that it is socially responsible and considerate of the protection of children.

"The ASA now has the power to adjudicate as to a breach of its Codes and require online content to be withdrawn to prevent any further breaches of the Codes. Where a business fails to comply with rulings of the ASA, the ASA also has the power to refer cases to the Office of Fair Trading to ensure compliance with the principles set out in the ASA's codes. The OFT has the power to prosecute offenders. Sanctions can include imprisonment and/or fines."

Anyone concerned about the new restrictions concerning online advertising, and looking for advice about a specific business, can contact Farhat Mahmood on 0113 243 6601 or email (farhat.mahmood@forwarn.com) quoting the subject as "ASA". For additional information regarding Ford & Warren, please visit http://www.forwarn.com.

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Erica M. Kusmierz

Farhat Mahmood
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