Cloud storage deals may be unfair, competition watchdog warns

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Cloud storage providers have been criticised by the UK competition regulator for using contracts that could see smartphone fans have their services terminated without notice.

Nearly a third of UK adults use cloud storage to store photos, films, music and documents from devices such as tablets and smartphones. Providers include Dropbox and Apple iCloud and many benefit from free services.

But not all customers are being treated fairly and the Competition and Markets Authority found that businesses have some contract terms and practices which could breach consumer law. These include terminations or automatic renewals at the end of a fixed term.

Nisha Arora, CMA senior director, said: “These terms could result in people losing access to their treasured possessions or facing unexpected charges.”

Customers have been urged to challenge contracts if they think them unfair, and firms have been advised to ensure consumers get the necessary information before they buy a product. After the inquiry, providers such as Dixons Carphone, JustCloud and Livedrive have promised fairer terms for their cloud storage customers.

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May 28, 2016 |
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