are you required to disclose business information on social media?

01 September 2022

by Wannes Gardin and Magali Anné

Are you required to disclose business information on social media?

The requirement for influencers to disclose their physical address on social media channels, such as Twitter, Instagram and Facebook, has received extensive news coverage recently. Are these rules restricted to influencers or do they also apply to your business? We have looked into the matter.

Are you required to disclose business information on social media?

Who is affected?

Belgium’s Code of Economic Law stipulates an obligation to disclose business information on social media for both influencers and any company active as a “provider of information society services”. In other words, it concerns nearly every company making use of modern media.

A recent inspection by FPS Economy revealed that one out of three companies is in violation, however. Quite a few companies have meanwhile received a warning requesting their compliance.   

What information must you disclose?

Considering this renewed attention for the disclosure of business information on social media, which may well apply to your company as well, we have drawn up a list of all the information you are required to disclose. This obligation applies to all businesses, regardless of whether they are selling products or services through that social media platform.

You must state at least the following information:

  • Business name or trade name
  • Business address
  • Email address, if applicable
  • Enterprise number and VAT number

If pursuit of the activities in question is restricted to a regulated profession, you must also provide information regarding professional qualifications, professional rules and the competent authority.

Do your activities require a permit? In that case, you must also provide information regarding the supervisory authority.

Furthermore, if you are doing business as a company in accordance with the Belgian Code of Companies and Associations, you must certainly include the following information as well:

  • Legal business structure
  • Registered address and business address, if this is not the same as your registered office address
  • “Register of Legal Entities” or “RLE” followed by the court within whose territorial jurisdiction your company’s registered office is situated, followed by your enterprise number
  • If applicable, an indication that the enterprise is under liquidation

It is clear that the Economic Inspectorate is currently actively monitoring the proper disclosure of business information by companies on social media. It can therefore be a good idea to check whether your company’s various social media pages are legally compliant. 

Any questions? Our experts are always at your disposal