Consumer group warns public against modus operandi of online shops

UNTV News   •   December 29, 2017   •   4408

MANILA, Philippines – Online shopping remains in-demand due to the convenience it provides to consumers.

Nowadays, almost everything can be done through the internet, whether it is grocery, purchasing of gadgets, or booking of hotel or flights.

This is especially true for residents of Metro Manila where traveling is very difficult particularly during rush hour.

However, despite the undeniable success of online shopping, many consumers are falling prey to various modus operandi being committed online.

According to Vic Dimagiba of the consumer group Laban Konsyumer, people should be careful in purchasing products or services through the internet.

Dimagiba advises shoppers to properly check if the online store is authorized by the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) and to not be immediately enticed by discounts and promotions.

“In terms of promotion, check if it has approval of the Department of Trade and Industry or approval of government agencies that grants permits for promotions,” Dimagiba said.

According to Roselle Reig, a financial and business consultant, there is a way to determine the legitimacy of a website offering products or services.

“Normally, when we verify, we would see on the top of the website if there is an ‘https’. It means the site is secured. It also has a lock. When we see it on the site, we can feel secure that this site is secured because they attained a certificate which is the ‘https’,” Reig said.

Among the victims of online scamming is UNTV News anchor Darlene Basingan. She purchased an item online but was shocked to receive an empty package.


According to Dimagiba, consumers can seek the help of government authorities when being victimized by an online shopping modus operandi.

“We may file our complaints with the Department of Trade and Industry. Under the Electronic Commerce Act, the agency is mandated by law to protect the rights of the consumers,” Dimagiba said.

Anyone with complaints can report it to the DTI hotline number 751-3330. – Mon Jocson | UNTV News & Rescue

Shift to GCQ not just yet, says DTI

Marje Pelayo   •   April 15, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — With the current number of COVID-19 infections in the country, Trade Secretary Ramon Lopez believes it is not yet time to shift into a more relaxed quarantine restriction.

During Thursday’s (April 15) Laging Handa briefing, Lopez said reverting back to a more relaxed general community quarantine (GCQ) will depend on the utilization rate of major hospitals in the country.

“Kapag further bumaba ang COVID cases at bumaba ang utilization rate, maraming bakante, ibig sabihin pwede tayong magluwag ulit to GCQ,” he said.

In March, World Health Organization (WHO) Country Representative Dr. Rabindra Abeyasinghe expressed concern over alleged COVID-19 clustering in workplaces.

Lopez said the recent spike in the country’s COVID-19 cases shouldn’t be blamed on the return of workers because the clusters of cases in workplaces was only about 20 percent since the reopening of the economy.

“Base sa datos, ang contribution ng mga cases —  mga clusters ng ilan sa workplaces — ay around 20% lamang,” Lopez said.  “Isa nga sa observation bago nagtaas muli ang cases ay ang pagdami ng non-essential activities and gatherings.”

For this reason, the official said that when the country reverts to GCQ, he would not recommend the easing of restrictions on non-essential gatherings.

“I would think that once we move to GCQ, isa pa rin ‘yan sa ipagpapatuloy munang ipagbawal – mga gatherings na non-essential,” he said.

DTI prefers not extending NCR Plus Bubble beyond April 4

Aileen Cerrudo   •   March 26, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) said it is not in favor of extending the National Capital Region (NCR) Plus Bubble beyond April 4.

DTI Undersecretary Ruth Castelo said extending the stricter quarantine in NCR would not be beneficial for the economy. Castelo said businesses can still operate while individuals follow health protocols.

Kung tatanungin mo ang DTI, gusto na sana natin na maipa-open na ulit sa April 5. Hindi naman siguro natin kailangan totally isara ang mga negosyo or ang paggalaw ng tao. Dahil kung susundin natin lahat ng mandatory protocols, makakatulong pa rin iyan kapag tuloy-tuloy ang negosyo (If you’re going to ask the DTI, we prefer to open [the economy] by April 5. We may not need to close businesses or limit the public. Because as long as mandatory protocols are followed, it will still be beneficial if businesses will continue),” he said.

The recommended extension of the NCR Plus Bubble stemmed from the study of the University of the Philippines (UP) OCTA Research where it would need four months to see the effects of the restriction in the NCR and see the possible lowering of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) cases.

According to the National Economic Development Authority (NEDA), Metro Manila and its neighboring cities lose around P700 million in profit due to the implementation of the general community quarantine (GCQ). -AAC (with reports from Joan Nano)

DTI orders cinemas, other tourism-related establishments closed until April 14

Marje Pelayo   •   March 19, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — Due to the rising number of COVID-19 cases, the national government has decided to temporarily close some of the newly opened sectors in areas under general community quarantine (GCQ).

Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Secretary Ramon Lopez on Thursday (March 18) said that driving schools, cinemas, video arcades, museums, and cultural centers, as well as limited social events in all establishments accredited by the Department of Tourism (DOT) will be suspended immediately until April 4.

He was present at the meeting of the Inter Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF) via video feed after testing positive again for COVID-19.

“Due to rising cases, DTI also supports scaling back of some activities that were recently reopened or expanded,” he said.

Lopez added that the IATF is reducing capacity for meetings, incentives, conference, and exhibitions industry to 30 percent while venue capacity of dine-in restaurants, cafés, and personal care services will be scaled back to 50 percent.

He said the IATF will issue a new circular on the matter.


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