Showing posts filed under: FTC Beat by Nicole Kardell

November 20, 2011

Self-Regulation Reigns, for Now, on Consumer Data Privacy Issues

The online advertising industry is inching its way to more comprehensive policies regarding the collection of consumer data. Several announcements this month by different self-regulatory groups show that pressure from government agencies and consumer watchdog groups concerned about consumer privacy is taking effect . . . slowly but surely. The most recent pronouncement comes from… Read More

October 19, 2011

Inside the Privacy Event Keynoted By FTC Chair Leibowitz

Federal Trade Commission Chairman Jon Leibowitz delivered the keynote speech at a forum on Internet privacy on Oct. 11, 2011. He was part of a panel that discussed the protection of consumer data and the tracking of online consumer behavior. The Stanford Law School Center for Internet and Society also released a study the same… Read More

October 5, 2011

Is It a Real Breast Cancer Cause – Or ‘Pinkwashing’?

October is Breast Cancer Awareness month. And pink is everywhere – all over the shelves of retail stores like Wal-Mart and adorning the backs of NFL linemen. We’ve been trained to know that the color pink represents a supporter of breast cancer awareness or research. So sporting a pink ribbon, jersey, or band should demonstrate… Read More

September 28, 2011

FTC Is Asked to Crack Down on ‘Supercookies’ as Data Privacy Violation

The bastard stepchild of online behavioral advertising – the supercookie – is in the hot seat. Two members of the House of Representatives sent a letter to the FTC on September 27 calling on the commission to look into the usage and impact of supercookies on consumers. Reps. Ed Markey (D-Mass.) and Joe Barton (R-Tex.),… Read More

September 20, 2011

Payday Lenders Find Themselves in FTC’s Cross Hairs

Like pawnbrokers, payday lenders cater to people in a tight squeeze. That means they can, in turn, put the squeeze on their customers, charging annual percentage interest rates above 300 percent for their short-term unsecured loans. That also means they are a popular target of federal regulators who are concerned about vulnerable consumers. The FTC… Read More

September 12, 2011

Prepaid Phone Companies Dial a Wrong Number at the FCC

Companies marketing prepaid phone cards should be on the lookout: the Federal Communications Commission is threatening more-severe penalties for deceptive advertising. The prepaid phone card business is pretty profitable, with the industry raking in billions every year. Plastering phone cards with names like “Africa Magic” and “Hola Amigo,” prepaid calling card companies target immigrant populations,… Read More

August 15, 2011

FTC’s Mortgage Acts and Practices Advertising Rule May Not Help Consumers

The FTC recently issued the Mortgage Acts and Practices – Advertising Final Rule. This rule is the FTC’s response to a congressional directive to address unfair or deceptive acts in the mortgage loan industry. Briefly, the MAP Rule (1) gives the FTC and state authorities the ability to seek civil penalties for deceptive mortgage advertising,… Read More

July 27, 2011

For-Profit Colleges Challenge Education Department’s Rules

The Association of Private Sector Colleges and Universities is taking on the Department of Education. The organization, which represents some 1500 for-profit education institutions, filed its second lawsuit this year to contest the agency’s new regulations aimed at career colleges. The ASPCU won one and lost two in the first suit, and is currently appealing… Read More

July 18, 2011

Those ‘Voluntary’ Rules for Food Companies are Anything But Voluntary

There’s been a lot of talk of late about the cost to industry of government regulation. The president of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Tom Donohue, asserted at a job summit on Monday that recent government initiatives are “unjustified and uncalled for in a free society and a free economy” and are “killing American jobs.”… Read More

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