PS11752 - ICA: Antitrust acts to prevent online unfair practices: proceedings against, for the sale of Covid-19 prevention and diagnostic products


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On the 29th of April, the Authority launched an investigation and opened a sub-proceedings aimed at issuing, if necessary, an interim measure against ZC (FR) Limited, the company responsible for the platform a marketplace active in Europe.

The subject-matter of the proceedings is the sale of products on the platform, for the prevention and/or diagnosis of contagion from the SARS-CoV-2 virus (Coronavirus, Covid-19).

In particular, on the one hand, it involves the offering of alleged home diagnostic tests for coronavirus which could mislead consumers and endanger their health as it expressly refers to  their capacity to detect the antibodies of the new coronavirus in human blood, serum or plasma, despite precise indications of their unreliability from the health authorities.

On the other hand, it concerns the use of precise claims of specific effectiveness to some products (mainly filtering face masks) in terms of protection against the COVID 19 virus.

Moreover, the Authority will investigate the high level of prices recorded in recent weeks with reference to these products. .

The proceedings, aimed at assessing the responsibility of the ZC with regard to the marketplace VOVA platform, originated from investigations carried out ex officio and are part of awide monitoring activity that the Authority is carrying out on the e-Commerce sector during the ongoing  health emergency.

Rome, 29 April 2020