The pre requisite for an electronic commerce transaction to be enforceable
Ever wonder what are the pre-requisites for an electronic commerce transaction to be enforceable? Jillian Chia explains …
Due to the rapid growth of electronic commerce in recent times, there has been a surge in the usage of the internet for business transactions. Commercial transactions such as banking transactions and the purchase of goods and services are now frequently performed over the internet and other computer networks. Furthermore, communication via e-mail is now commonplace in the commercial world. In line with this development, the Electronic Commerce Act 2006 (“the Act”) was enacted and came into force on 19th October 2006. The Act seeks to “provide for legal recognition of electronic messages in commercial transactions, the use of the electronic messages to fulfil legal requirements and to enable and facilitate commercial transactions through the use of electronic means”. APPLICATION OF THE ACT
The Act does not make it mandatory for commercial transactions to be conducted electronically. It applies to situations whereby a person consents to using, providing or accepting an electronic message in a commercial transaction. Such consent may be inferred from the person’s conduct. The scope of the Act also covers electronic commercial transactions carried out by the Federal and State Governments. However, the Act does not apply to certain transactions or documents, namely (1) power of attorney, (2) creation of wills and codicils, (3) creation of trusts, and (4) negotiable instruments. ‘Electronic’ and ‘electronic messages’ are respectively defined under the Act as:-
“the technology of utilizing electrical, optical, magnetic, electromagnetic, biometric, photonic or other similar technology”
“information generated, sent, received or stored by electronic means”.
Commercial transactions are defined as:-“a single communication