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A Blog About FTC regulations and happenings

2018: The End of Cryptocurrencies?
January 22, 2018

2018: The End of Cryptocurrencies?

By: Steven Eichorn
Cryptocurrencies (e.g. Bitcoin) took the broader public by storm in 2017 and had a breakout year. There were outsized and even unprecedented returns, along with extreme volatility and even more extreme volatility.  The question for 2018 is whether cryptocurrencies had their “fifteen minutes of fame” or they are here to stay? Blockchain technology (which is widely understood to have huge upside benefits) is distinct from the associated cryptocurrencies (whose value is widely debated). Blockchain technology allows people to complete transactions in a peer-to-peer fashion and avoid intermediaries (like central banks), which cuts down on transaction time and costs. It also eliminates the potential for fraudulent transfers. The peer-to-peer transaction is enabled by blockchain technology that utilizes a shared ledger to authenticate, record, and complete transactions in a cheap and fast technique. The peer-to-peer blockchain technology also provides anonymity to “currency” transactions that was previously only available to cash transactions- indeed, some of the earliest adopters and drivers of the blockchain technology were people seeking to avoid regulatory oversight and scrutiny (or... Read more

No one likes being on the receiving end of an immunization shot, but many of us submit to a flu shot each fall or winter.  David Latner, a patient of the Mount Sinai Health System’s West Park Medical facility, apparently found a single text from West Park reminding him about flu shots to be alarming… Read More

The first of the year is a good time to make assessments, resolutions and predictions. We have some recommendations for companies that store and process consumer data: It is a good time to assess the strength of your data security measures and resolve to meet industry standards where you fall behind, because we predict continued… Read More

Following a change of heart from a top Securities and Exchange Commission regulator, public companies will likely soon face new guidelines for how they report cybersecurity breaches to investors. SEC Corporate Finance Division Director Bill Hinman was quoted as saying that when Chairman Jay Clayton first asked him if the existing SEC guidance needed to… Read More

Bitcoin and a host of cryptocurrencies have taken both Wall Street and Main Street by storm in 2017.  The nearly continuous gains in the price of Bitcoin have spawned numerous imitators and led a number of companies to raise critical start-up funds by selling their own token/cryptocurrency in a process similar to an initial public… Read More

The unregulated nature of virtual currencies like Bitcoin plays a big role in their appeal. However, wild swings in prices in addition to the perception that these markets are subject to manipulation, make it difficult—if not impossible—for the average person to rely heavily on Bitcoin and other virtual currencies as a currency, much less as… Read More

Cryptocurrency is the latest trend to be embraced by celebrities, so much so that the federal government this month issued a warning about the possible risks involved.  Both the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) have made clear that if a celebrity is being paid to promote a product… Read More

Deadline Fast Approaches for Final DMCA Registration
November 7, 2017

Deadline Fast Approaches for Final DMCA Registration

By: Steven Eichorn

The Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) provides a safe harbor from copyright infringement liability for online service providers. While not a particularly famous law, it is a critical law because it enables websites to accommodate user-generated content without being concerned for copyright infringement claims by hosting that content. However, in order to preserve their safe… Read More

Congress Saves Consumer Arbitration
October 25, 2017

Congress Saves Consumer Arbitration

By: George Calhoun

In July 2017, the Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection (“CPFB”) announced a new rule broadly barring arbitration provisions in a wide swath of consumer contracts.  See 12 CFR part 1040.  To go into effect next Spring, the final rule would have prohibited providers of certain consumer financial products and services from using an agreement with… Read More

GDPR D-Day:  If Not Prepared, It Could Cost You Europe
September 26, 2017

GDPR D-Day: If Not Prepared, It Could Cost You Europe

By: Nicole Kardell

GDPR D-Day: May 25, 2018. If you are not prepared, the results could cost you Europe. In the U.S., we’ve had a pretty business-friendly approach to consumer data protection. And while federal and state authorities have their respective consumer protection laws, there is no single federal law that clearly defines U.S. policy on how consumer… Read More