Showing posts filed under: FTC Beat by Michelle W. Cohen

January 28, 2014

Data Privacy Day

By Michelle Cohen, CIPP-US On January 28th, in an effort raise awareness of privacy and data privacy, the United States, Canada and 27 countries of the European Union celebrate International Data Privacy Day.  Many organizations use Data Privacy Day as an opportunity to educate their employees and stakeholders about privacy-related topics.  With the recent, high-profile data… Read More

January 22, 2014

FTC Clamps Down on EU Safe Harbor Compliance: If Your Company Says It Is Certified, Keep Your Certification Current

Once again using its administrative litigation process, the Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) announced settlements with twelve large businesses, including the Atlanta Falcons and Denver Broncos football teams, the Baker Tilly accounting firm, BitTorrent, Inc., a peer-to-peer file sharing protocol, Level 3 Communications (one of the largest Internet service providers in the world), and Reynolds Consumer Products,… Read More

January 9, 2014

Industry, Members of Congress Take Action on FTC Process

As the Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) continues to flex its consumer protection muscles by bringing numerous administrative lawsuits, industry and members of Congress are questioning whether there is a level playing field that allows companies to properly defend themselves against FTC charges.  Or, as some say, does the FTC have the “home court advantage” in… Read More

November 20, 2013

FTC Vigilant on Children’s Privacy – Rejects Proposal for Collecting Verifiable Parental Consent Under COPPA

On November 12, 2013, the Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”), in a 4-0 vote, denied AssertID’s application for approval of a proposed verifiable parental consent (“VPC”) method under the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Rule (“COPPA”).  Under the FTC’s COPPA rule, covered online websites and services must obtain “verifiable parental consent” (“VPC”) before collecting personal information from… Read More

October 7, 2013

CFPB Shows It’s a Tough New Cop on the Beat With Case Against Payment Processor

On October 3, 2013, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau announced it had filed a complaint in federal district court in Washington state against a leading debt-settlement payment processor, Meracord LLC, and its CEO.  The CFPB contends that Meracord helped third parties collect millions of dollars in illegal upfront fees from consumers. The complaint alleged violations… Read More

September 9, 2013

With Complaint Against LabMD, FTC Continues to Flex Enforcement Muscle on Data Security

The Federal Trade Commission recently filed another complaint against a company for alleged data security lapses. As readers of this blog know, the FTC has initiated numerous lawsuits against companies in various industries for data security and privacy violations, although it is facing a backlash from Wyndham and large industry organizations for allegedly lacking the… Read More

July 30, 2013

FTC Orders Mobile Device Maker to Patch Up Its Software Security

Following a public comment period, the Federal Trade Commission recently approved a final order settling charges against mobile device manufacturer HTC America, Inc. HTC develops and manufactures mobile devices based on the Android, Windows Mobile, and Windows Phone operating systems. This case, which focuses on device security, is the FTC’s first case against a device… Read More

June 30, 2013

FTC to Search Engines: Distinguish Paid Search Results or Risk FTC Action

While Google is already subject to commitments it made to the FTC regarding the requirement to afford advertisers non-discriminatory access to its search engine, the FTC’s latest guidance makes clear that Google and other search engines must also maintain clear disclosures to the public about sponsored content in search results. On June 24, 2013, in… Read More

April 25, 2013

What’s That Charge on My Mobile Phone Bill? The FTC Wants to Know

“Cramming” – while it sounds like the experience of being in the middle row of a cross-country flight – actually refers to unauthorized charges on phone bills. Residential and business telecommunications customers have experienced cramming on their wireline bills for years, particularly for premium and other pay-per-call services. And the FTC has brought nearly two… Read More

March 15, 2013

FTC Revises Online Advertising Disclosure Guidelines: Say It and Say It Clearly

This week, the FTC released updated guidance to its 2000 “Dot Com Disclosures,” a guide covering disclosures in online advertising. The online world has certainly changed in 13 years, and the new guidelines, available here, cover advances in online advertising, including mobile advertising. One central theme still prevails: existing consumer protection laws and rules apply no… Read More

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