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Can You Ban Customers From Your Online Store?

Can You Ban Customers From Your Online Store?

Are users on your website breaching your terms of use? Find out here how you can take action and ban customers from your website.

2nd September 2019

When running a website for your business, it can be hard to regulate the behaviour of your users. However one thing you can do is state in your online terms and conditions that if users do not comply with them, you will take action and ban customers from your site. This is important if you want to take legal action against a user if they continue to breach your rules. In this article, we’ll discuss whether you can ban a user from your website.

What clauses in the terms and conditions let me ban users?

The user’s rights

The user’s rights and license to use your online store are located within your terms and conditions. This usually lists what the customer can and cannot do while using your website.

Termination clauses

The termination clauses within your goods and services accounts gives you the discretion to ban certain users from your online website for prohibited or abusive activity.

What behaviour can I ban a user for?

You can ban customers temporarily if they engage in abusive online behaviour. The conduct should be sufficiently serious to warrant being banned from your site. It can be reported by another user of your site or be something that you notice yourself. Further, if you find that a user of your site is misusing the content you produce or infringing your intellectual property online.

How do I ban someone?

In most cases, you can ban a user by blocking their IP address from using your website. You can block their IP address by using cookies which will automatically recognise the address and restrict access to your site. Although this is the most common way to ban users, it can be easy for users to get around if they use a proxy or a different IP address. If your website has a login feature, you can ban specific accounts from being able to log in. However, the risk here is that a user can make an alias account and continue accessing your site.

However, you can take further action if you need to. If your store has a prominent social media presence, you can report them for breaching the community standards of the social media platform.

Conclusion

Running an online store can be stressful, especially when you have a user who is breaching your terms of use. However, you can enforce your terms by prohibiting access to your website. If you have further questions about enforcing your rights online, it is worth contacting a business lawyer.

Don’t know where to start? Contact us on 1800 529 728 to learn more about customising legal documents and obtaining a fixed-fee quote from Australia’s largest lawyer marketplace.

Author
Shrishti Shah

Shrishti is in her third year of a Bachelor of Laws. She is a Legal Intern for Lawpath. She is interested in Intellectual Property Law, Environmental Law, and also Consumer and Competition Law.