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A Blog About FTC regulations and happenings

Effective July 1, companies that offer free gift or trial periods for their products or services can no longer bill California consumers automatically at the expiration of the gift or trial period. Companies will be required to provide a “clear and conspicuous” explanation of the price that will be charged—or how the pricing will change—at the end of the trial. And companies cannot charge a consumer’s payment method without first obtaining the consumer’s conseThe new law modifies Section 17602 of the California Business and Professions Code, which already put restrictions in place on automatic renewal offers or continuous service offers. Section 17602 previously required “clear and conspicuous” terms. It also already required affirmative consent for charges. Despite these restrictions, numerous California consumers complained to legislators and regulators about unexpected charges and upcharges following a free or promotional period for automatic or continuous service offer.  The California legislature enacted new requirements to address these concerns.  The revised law also makes cancelling these programs easier for consumers. Specifically, the revised law incorporates... Read more

Make room Europe: California is taking on the data privacy challenge. For the last year or so, the privacy world has been abuzz with how to implement the E.U.’s General Data Protection Regulation. The buzz died down once GDPR went into effect in late May. But no rest for the weary. A little over a… Read More

More consumers are adopting cryptocurrency than ever, but regulators are less enthusiastic. As a result, cryptocurrency exchanges spend unnecessary time and resources working to comply with outdated guidelines. Kraken, which oversees $150 million in daily cryptocurrency transactions, is the latest exchange to experience this problem. In an effort to bring itself into compliance with current… Read More

In a ruling announced today, the Supreme Court held that online businesses can be subjected to sales tax even in states where they do not have any brick-and-mortar operations. The case, South Dakota v. Wayfair, Inc., overturns longstanding precedent requiring “physical presence” to subject a seller to state sales tax, representing a big change for… Read More

  On June 6, 2018, the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit issued a landmark ruling in LabMD v. Federal Trade Commission. While the Eleventh Circuit impliedly held that the Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) has authority to take enforcement action against companies whose unfair practices lead to data security incidents that pose… Read More

A public service announcement of yesteryear posed the following question to parents: “It’s 8:00. Do you know where your children are?” Today’s technology allows parents to answer that question regardless of the time of day. That technology, however, has recently drawn scrutiny for violating the parental notice and consent provisions of the Federal Trade Commission’s… Read More

The FTC is reported to be joining state and international regulators in examining Cambridge Analytica’s actions with data accessed from Facebook, including how the data analytics company obtained the information, what it did with the information, and whether Facebook complied with existing obligations, including a 2012 FTC consent decree. The situation underscores the importance of… Read More

Full Metal Cryptojacket
February 28, 2018

Full Metal Cryptojacket

By: James Trusty

In retrospect, it all seems so predictable. International capitalism creates virtual currencies. Banks are avoided. Millennials hail a new world order of anonymous or nearly untraceable market transactions. Numerous parties and exchanges hold on to large quantities of virtual currencies. But then the bad guys show up. And I’m not talking about the regulators. Last month, in what looks like the… Read More

Coming Soon: Digital Asset Regulation
February 20, 2018

Coming Soon: Digital Asset Regulation

By: George Calhoun

In January, Bitcoin dropped to approximately 50% of its 2017 peak price.  Other digital currencies saw similar declines. Most market observers blamed these massive price fluctuations on related events: (i) widespread reports of fraud and price manipulation, and (ii) increasing prospects for the regulation of digital assets and currencies. Indeed, 2018 has brought us federal… Read More

The Extraordinary Reach of FTC Ex Parte
February 6, 2018

The Extraordinary Reach of FTC Ex Parte

By: Ifrah Law

The Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) is granted extraordinary authority to participate in ex parte discussions with judges, conduct investigations and enact enforcement actions like asset freezes and TROs without notice to the parties it is targeting. Often the first time a company learns it is under investigation is when it is served a subpoena and… Read More

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