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A Blog About FTC regulations and happenings

On July 6, 2020, the Federal Trade Commission announced a settlement with gaming app developer Miniclip S.A. The settlement addresses allegations that Miniclip falsely claimed membership in a Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) safe harbor program for the last several years. Miniclip boasts more than 1 billion downloads of its 45 “high-quality mobile games” (such as Agar.io and Soccer Stars) and a further catalogue of 1,000 online games. Many of these games are directed toward young children, which is where the COPPA concerns come in. Broadly speaking, COPPA is a federal statute intended to ensure that children under 13 do not share their personal information online without the express approval of their parents. The FTC, which enforces COPPA, helps to manage compliance with the help of several FTC-approved self-regulatory safe harbor programs (currently, there are seven; these programs generally provide the same or greater protections than COPPA and ensure a level of program monitoring). If a company is a member of one of these safe... Read more

The FTC recently announced its settlement with Tapplock, Inc., a maker of smart padlocks (Internet-connected fingerprint-enabled padlocks that you can use in lieu of old-fashioned combo locks). The FTC investigated the Canadian-based company for its allegedly false claims that its Internet-connected smart locks were designed to be “unbreakable” and that the company took reasonable steps… Read More

Does your company’s privacy policy include a claim that it is Privacy-Shield certified? If so, you should ensure that it is, in fact, certified and that the certification has not lapsed. Failures in this area are low-hanging fruit for government enforcement actions.   A little background on the Privacy Shield Framework.  The U.S. Privacy Shield framework… Read More

Telemarketing Restrictions During State of Emergency
April 7, 2020

Telemarketing Restrictions During State of Emergency

By: Nicole Kardell

  If part of your marketing plan involves calls to consumers, please be aware of additional telemarketing restrictions in some states (presently New York and Louisiana) during a state of emergency.   New York New York recently enacted a law to prohibit unsolicited telemarketing calls during a state of emergency. Since New York Governor Andrew Cuomo… Read More

As businesses that make telemarketing or automated/prerecorded phone calls and send text messages and telemarketing faxes are well aware, the federal Telephone Consumer Protection Act (“TCPA”) imposes certain restrictions on communications sent without the recipient’s express consent or permission.  Many courts view the “prior express consent” or permission requirement quite broadly.  And just this week,… Read More

Work got a lot more personal when it moved in with my family. For people used to keeping a healthy divide between their business and personal lives, the new telework dynamic can be particularly stressful. That “healthy divide” can crumble under the weight of quarantine as tiny voices (kids and pets) infiltrate teleconference and video… Read More

COVID19 is not the only viral threat we face these days. Malware is a very real vulnerability for businesses large and small, among a host of other data security threats.   We have rapidly transitioned to telework. For many (perhaps most) businesses, that transition took place without a clear inventory of hardware leaving the office and… Read More

COVID-19 has become a pervasive concern for everyone. Older Americans are particularly susceptible to contracting COVID-19. On March 17th, the Trump Administration and the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced the expansion of Medicare beneficiaries’ access to telehealth services during the COVID-19 outbreak. Importantly, the HHS Office for Civil Rights (OCR) announced it… Read More

Cause Marketing Social causes are an important part of both community and business culture. Increasingly, businesses identify social causes to support as a part of their company mission. When they fold that mission into their marketing, it can trigger federal and state consumer protection laws (as well as federal tax laws). Why? To prevent fraud… Read More