Recent Posts

A loan again?

Say a consumer is thinking about buying something. They give a company information that would be necessary if they ultimately decide to make the purchase.  Now suppose the company auctions off that data to the highest bidder, who completes the transaction without ever getting the consumer’s consent to the terms.

Read Full Post >>

Big COPPA problems for TinyCo

Fans of Tiny Pets, Tiny Zoo, Tiny Village, Tiny Monsters, and Mermaid Resort will be relieved to know that adorable Sully the Dog and arch-nemesis Duke Spendington haven’t been named in their individual capacities. But the developer of those kid-directed apps – San-Francisco-based TinyCo, Inc. – just settled an FTC lawsuit alleging the company violated the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) Rule.

Read Full Post >>

FTC case against Yelp shows that COPPA isn’t just for kids’ sites

This is a post about the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) Rule.  Some readers already have a finger poised over the DELETE button since their business isn’t child-related.  But as the FTC’s settlement with Yelp suggests, that would be a mistake.

Read Full Post >>

Today’s the day for Big Data

Big Data is a big deal for businesses, consumers, academics, and policymakers.  There's no doubt it opens the door to more powerful analytical techniques that can advance medical research, education, transportation, etc.  But some have voiced concerns about whether it may be used to categorize consumers in ways that may affect them unfairly, or even unlawfully.  That's the topic on the table at an FTC workshop, Big Data: A Tool for Inclusion or Exclusion?, and it&

Read Full Post >>

(En)force to be reckoned with

Companies that sign settlements with the FTC need to know that those documents contain consumer protection provisions enforceable in court.  That’s the message of a motion for contempt just filed against Bayer Corporation by the Department of Justice and the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of New Jersey, with the assistance of the FTC.

Read Full Post >>