Tag: Unfair practices

October 14, 2013

After Google Action, Those Who Dig for Dirt Must Dig a Little Harder

Google recently announced that it would be taking action to demote websites that profit from the use of mugshot photos. These mugshot sites compile booking photographs taken after people’s arrests and publish them along with the arrestees’ names and information concerning the charges against them. Individuals who want their mugshot and arrest record deleted from… Read More

October 11, 2013

FTC Takes Tough Action Against ‘Scareware’ Tactics

A great way to make money is to develop a product or service that responds to a consumer want or demand, and then to stay ahead of prospective competitors by offering better pricing or quality. A not-so-great way to make money is to convince consumers to buy a product or service that they don’t really… 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

October 4, 2013

How to Break the Federal Debt-Collection Law — By Texting

It’s quite clear that the Federal Trade Commission and the Federal Communications Commission view existing federal consumer protection and communications statutes as fully applicable to new modes of communication such as texting. One excellent recent example is the FTC’s stipulated settlement, including a payment of $1 million, with a debt collection agency that had sent… 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

August 6, 2013

FTC Looking Closely at Impact on Consumers of ‘Big Data’

Manufacturers and marketers know that the more consumer data they have, the more they can tailor and direct their advertising, their products, and their product placement. This helps them to maximize sales and minimize costs. Thanks to the combination of cheap data storage and ubiquitous data capturers (e.g., smart phones, credit cards, the Web), 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 12, 2013

Wyndham Case Challenges FTC’s Authority Over Cybersecurity

Over the past decade the Federal Trade Commission has brought cybersecurity enforcement actions against various private companies, imposing tens of millions of dollars in monetary penalties and requiring companies to maintain more stringent data-security practices. No company has ever challenged the FTC’s authority to regulate cybersecurity in this way in court – until now. On… Read More

April 26, 2013

FTC, Rent-to-Own Stores Settle Charges of Spying on Consumers Via Rented Computers

The Federal Trade Commission recently approved nine final orders that settle charges against seven rent-to-own stores and a software design firm and its principals. The charges stemmed from shocking allegations that the companies spied on consumers using computers that the consumers had rented from them. Among other things, the Commission’s complaint alleged that the computers… Read More

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