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A Blog About FTC regulations and happenings

Does your company or its affiliate advertisers use celebrities or influencers  to market your services? Do you use customer reviews to promote your offerings? The Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”), energized by new Chairperson Lina Khan, just sent out notices to over 700 companies – including many household names (https://www.ftc.gov/system/files/attachments/penalty-offenses-concerning-endorsements/list-recipients-endorsement-notice.pdf)  warning them about using fake reviews and other misleading endorsements in advertising their products and services. The agency is using its “Penalty Offense Authority’ to remind advertisers that they could incur penalties of up to $43,791 per violation if they use advertisements in a manner that has already been ruled unlawful in a prior FTC order. As gaming industry companies and their affiliates, in particular, actively engage in advertising using influencers and reviews to capture market share in new markets, companies should carefully review their (and their affiliates’) use of reviews and endorsements. What’s the Concern? The FTC regulates unfair and deceptive business practices. As organizations’ use of social media for advertising has grown, the FTC has issued guidelines and other... Read more

Last October, we reported on the Third Circuit Court of Appeals’ decision in Federal Trade Commission v. AbbVie, Inc., in which the appeals court overturned a trial court’s decision ordering $448 million in disgorgement pursuant to Section 13(b) of the Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) Act against a group of businesses accused of trying to monopolize… Read More

As previously reported in this space, the Supreme Court is scheduled to hear argument in its upcoming term regarding whether the Federal Trade Commission was authorized to seek monetary relief such as disgorgement or restitution under Section 13(b) of the FTC Act.  These cases do not just call into question the availability of a certain… Read More

In the latest blow to businesses seeking to offer digital tokens or cryptocurrencies to consumers, the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York ruled on Wednesday that Kik Interactive Inc.’s offering of its Kin digital token violated Section 5 of the federal Securities Act, granting summary judgment to the Securities and… Read More

In the eyes of federal investigators, when is a payment processor considered a benevolent alternative to traditional banks, and when is it viewed as a shady facilitator of all things criminal?  In other words, is the client another Paypal or Venmo, or are we looking at a potential WireCard AG prosecution? We have noticed in… Read More

The privacy world is abuzz about the European Court of Justice’s July 16, 2020 decision in Schrems II: Europe’s highest court invalidated the EU-US Privacy Shield framework. The Privacy Shield provides a streamlined mechanism to facilitate personal data transfers from Europe to the U.S. It was implemented in 2016 following the invalidation of an earlier… Read More

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”… 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