Consumer law and influencers: Transparency is key!

Consumer law is intended to be applied to all professionals, and now it seems that this includes influencers as well.

Nabilla Benattia-Vergara, a famous French influencer, can attest to that after the DGCCRF (Direction générale de la Concurrence, de la Consommation et de la Répression des fraudes) carried out a control on her Snapchat account.

In 2018 Nabilla Benattia-Vergara promoted trading training services without specifying the paid nature of this partnership. The DGCCRF considered that the absence of an indication of the advertising nature of this publication is a misleading commercial practice against the influencer’s subscribers who could wrongly believe that the influencer’s promotion was the result of a disinterested positive personal experience.

Similarly, the DGCCRF sanctioned Nabilla Benattia-Vergara for alleging that the service offered by the trading site was free of charge, that the sums invested were systematically recovered and that returns of up to 80% were possible thanks to their advice, considering that these remarks were likely to mislead the consumer on the characteristics of the service and the results they may expect from its use, and also fell under the category of misleading commercial practices.

With the agreement of the Public Prosecutor of the Paris judicial court, a settlement fine of 20,000 euros was proposed and accepted by Nabilla Benattia-Vergara, taking into account the benefit derived from the promotional operation.

On the occasion of this decision, the DGCCRF recalled that one of its roles was to control the practices implemented in this new advertising sector in order to ensure the transparency and fairness of the claims made. The DGCCRF stated that other investigations were underway.