July 20, 2015
eGlobal Digital Cameras is a Hong Kong company that pretends to be Australian. Customers should understand this clearly.
[ADDENDUM 20 SEPTEMBER 2015: The company has since fixed the defective mobile phone – but I’m not happy with its continuing claim to be an Australian company. And that its Australian contact people are uncontactable. Based on information obtained over the past four months, I’ve slightly amended my post, below, – took me more than 4 months to get my phone fixed. Either way, a bad experience, but some of the issues that have emerged are wider than just my phone]
I am loathe to write against companies but my experience with Eglobal is something that needs to be recorded. This company, with a “.au” URL is NOT an Australian company but purports to be one.
Details of my interaction with it (in relation to a mobile phone that I purchased from it) are provided here. [Updated as at 20 September 2015]
I purchased the phone believing it to be an Australian company (the .au URL). Turns out it is located in Hong Kong and the company’s warranty DOES NOT apply to Australia.
The phone died during the warranty period.
ISSUES THAT CAME UP DURING THE PROCESS
(1) The phone could not be returned to Hong Kong since Australia Post does not carry mobile phones by air.
This issue has since been resolved. It was clarified by Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) that there was nothing to prevent Australia Post from carrying my defective mobile phone by air. Turns out this was an Australia Post internal rule. I complained and was informed that Australia Post is changing its rules and will carry mobile phones by air within the year.
(2) It is misleading (but not illegal) for a Hong Kong company to use .au domain
AUDA has confirmed in writing and verbally that all a company needs is an ABN number to get an “.au” domain. AUDA does not care whether the company actually operates in Australia.
(3) The company has an ABN but it effectively NOT an Australian company
Trading name Trudark Pty Ltd
ABN 58 003 759 662
ACN 003 759 662
Type Australian Proprietary Company
Business Location NSW 2128
Locality HARRIS PARK NSW 2150
Active from 31/03/2000
GST Status Not Registered
Business name Dwi Digital Cameras/ Digital World International
Websites ** eglobaldigitalcameras.com.au, dwidigitalcameras.com.au, eglobalbeauty.com.au
Domain Name eglobaldigitalcameras.com.au
Registrar Name Melbourne IT
Registrant TRUDARK PTY. LIMITED
Registrant Contact Name Hugo Oliphant
Registrant Contact Email firstname.lastname@example.org
See also: https://www.ozbargain.com.au/node/57309
I have written to Hugo Oliphant at email@example.com for more details. I have sent two emails to the company’s publicly declared email ID. No response.
I now need to report this Hong Kong company to ASIC and the Australian Tax Office.
(4) Violation of Australian consumer law
No company should be able to sell products in Australia without ensuring these are waranteed and fit for purpose. I suspect eGlobal Digital Cameras has violated consumer laws. I will investigate and report the company appropriately. [I have not been able to pursue this line of inquiry, so now that the phone has been repaired – being sent to Hong Kong – I’m not sure whether this violation applies.]
MY REVIEWS OF E-GLOBAL ON VARIOUS PRODUCT REVIEW SITES
(5) Seemingly asked me to violate the Dangerous Goods Act – BUT E-GLOBAL WAS RIGHT ON THIS.
After my persistence, they have agreed to pick up the phone for a fee of $50, but are now asking me to break the Dangerous Goods Act (see email below).
***** Please do not reply directly through this email. *****
Regard the order to return, we will arrange with the courier (TNT) to collect your product.
TNT will send you an email for the pickup arrangement. Please check your email box and open the link to submit the order.
Kindly remind you that the invoice is required for pick up by the courier, please click ‘YES’ on the shipment details by submitting the order. Please do not mention there would be a battery inside the box.
Please print the invoice that TNT provided by the email and give the invoice to the courier man, thanks.
The fact that mobile phones (with batteries) cannot be carried by air is due to the risk they may create, potentially causing loss of lives. The company is asking me to make a false declaration, penalty for which is specified in the Act, below.
44A. Offence to give false or misleading information
(1) A person must not give information in complying or purportedly complying with this Act that the person knows to be false or misleading in a material particular. Penalty: 240 penalty units for a natural person; 1200 penalty units for a body corporate.
On this matter, however, I found that Australia Post was non-complaint with the law. It is OK to send a mobile phone by air, as confirmed by CASA.
Accordingly, there is NO requirement to declare a single mobile phone battery. When I did, after verification of the laws, send the phone by courier, I DID not declare any dangerous good, as was consistent with advice from CASA.