Concern about ‘The Dark Side’ at BMA’s AGM

Published:  13 July, 2011

STOKE: The ‘Dark Side’ of the internet sparked a lively discussion at the recent AGM of the Bathroom Manufacturers Association held at the Britannia Stadium.

“It isn’t a usual topic at a bathroom business meeting,” commented Yvonne Orgill, chief executive of the Keele University-based BMA, “but the criminal side of eCommerce does give rise to some concern amongst our trade members. All bathroom manufacturers now have some sort of web presence and with that comes risk. No website is 100% secure and we are all vulnerable to some degree.”

The discussion followed a presentation given at the AGM by Phill Thorley, Sales Manager of service provider Internet Central. He showed how the internet continues to grow rapidly and how eCommerce has become mainstream. He added that seventeen percent of all retail sales are transacted over the internet and the number is growing. Complete bathrooms are regularly being bought on-line.

But he added that no website was safe from the criminal fraternity who may be set on causing a website to collapse (a great way of ruining a competitor’s business) or worse still defrauding an individual or a company. He stressed the need for vigilance and regular updates on firewalls and passwords were essential.

The AGM elected Ian Stuart, of Aqualisa Products and Just Trays, as BMA President for a second year and Steve Lee, of Methven UK, as second vice president. David Osborne, of Roman Showers, continues for another year as first vice president. The newly elected management team fully represents the diverse membership of the BMA.

In his report to members Ian Stuart showed that the BMA is a pro-active organisation in ‘excellent shape’ with a growing membership. He said that the BMA is maintaining its focus on the key areas of water efficiency, technical aspects of bathrooms, education and training and the environment. The BMA continues to build strong relationships between the UK-based bathroom industry and related trade bodies in Europe and globally, and is playing an important role in advising government officials in their drive for sustainable homes.

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