Doing Business Online: 6 Internet Laws You Need to Know

Nowadays, most businesses have some kind of online presence. Whether you conduct business exclusively on the Internet or just use it to spread the word, there are government regulations and laws you should be aware of. Following these regulations will not only help you to build a reputation as a trustworthy company, but also enhance your relationship with current and prospective clients.

Copyright law

When you publish any kind of content online, whether it's onsite product information or a post on your company's blog, it's crucial to understand copyright. As a business, you cannot use any type of copied material without explicit permission from the owner (and it may cost money). This applies to videos and images, as well as written content. Also, keep in mind that rewritten content can be viewed as spun material, making it unoriginal and, therefore, plagiarism.

Privacy policy

Your privacy policy relates to how customers' personal information is collected and used on your website. As a business, it's vital that you not only have a privacy policy, but that you make it easily accessible to the public so that they believe that your company is legitimate. Unfortunately, many people are afraid of making purchases online or trusting web companies because of identity theft, fraud and spam. Establishing a privacy policy is a good way to gain the trust of your online audience.

Consumers' rights

While you obviously want to protect your business, you also want customers to feel secure in their purchases, which is why it's important to understand consumers' rights. When a customer purchases a product or service from you, a contract agreement for the business is put into effect and must be followed. With that in mind, always state your return policy clearly and try to be fair about your conditions and terms.

Trademark law

You want customers to be able to easily distinguish your product or service from others, and trademark law helps you do this. The trademark law protects any word, phrase, name, logo or other commercial signifiers used to identify your company's offerings.

Domain name rights

When you choose a domain name, it's important to secure it so that customers can find your business online where they expect to. You should choose a domain name that accurately reflects your company, is catchy, and is easy for audiences to remember.

Internet contract

Before you begin an online business, create a website, and provide products or services online, it's very important to establish a contract. This summarizes the liabilities, rights and responsibilities of both you and the customer. Since contracts can be lengthy and detailed, you can hire a Thousand Oaks business lawyer to help you create one.

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