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News Story
3/12/2013
Posted by Mark Reback
NEW YORK — Google agreed to pay a $7 million fine in the United States on Tuesday for stealthily collecting data from private Wi-Fi hotspots in a mapping service slip that irked an array of countries. In a legal settlement with attorneys general in 38 states, the Internet giant also agreed to ramp up employee training about data privacy and...
News Story
3/12/2013
Posted by Mark Reback
Slurp sparks states' slight slap Google is reportedly close to settling with the 30 US states that were pursuing it over the infamous StreetView Wifi data slurp. In between practicing taking the decision seriously in public, there are probably fits of giggles breaking out in Google's boardroom, because according to Reuters, the proposed...
News Story
3/12/2013
Posted by Mark Reback
SAN FRANCISCO — Google on Tuesday acknowledged to state officials that it had violated people’s privacy during its Street View mapping project when it casually scooped up passwords, e-mail and other personal information from unsuspecting computer users. In agreeing to settle a case brought by 38 states involving the project, the search...
News Story
3/12/2013
Posted by Mark Reback
Marketers hawking diet pills and other questionable goods on social media will have to be more forthcoming. Digital ads that pop up on Twitter, Facebook and other mobile sites must be accompanied by disclosures to avoid deceptive practices, according to a rule update issued Tuesday by the Federal Trade Commission. The new rule "takes into...
Blog Post
3/8/2013
Posted by John M. Simpson
Reports were circulating in the tech press Friday that serial privacy violator Google is about to cut a deal with state attorneys general to close their investigation of the Wi-Spy scandal. Remember what happened?  Google sent specially equipped cars to travel the highways and byways of the world snapping photos of everything they passed....
News Story
3/5/2013
Posted by Mark Reback
After all of the trouble Google has encountered in its attempts to monetize its users’ information, you would think the company had learned its lesson. Think again – consumer groups are angry that Google has reportedly been improperly sharing app purchasers’ info with third-party developers.   ‘Play’ For Keeps...
News Story
3/5/2013
Posted by Mark Reback
Sen. John D. Rockefeller IV (D-W.Va.), chairman of the Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee, Feb. 28 reintroduced a do-not-track bill (S. 418) aimed at allowing consumers to opt out of having their activities followed by online services and mobile application providers.   The measure, dubbed the Do-Not-Track Online Act of...
News Story
3/4/2013
Posted by Mark Reback
Are you ready for $6-per-gallon gasoline? Then $7 a little later? Premium grades of gasoline already go for more than $5 per gallon in some parts of California; regular has been above $4.50 for a month at hundreds of service stations. There is no promise these near-record price levels will drop anytime soon, especially with summer approaching and...
News Release
2/28/2013
Posted by John M. Simpson
WASHINGTON, DC – Consumer Watchdog today praised Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D-W VA) for introducing a Do-Not-Track bill, which would charge the Federal Trade Commission with establishing standards by which consumers could tell online companies, including mobile applications, that they do not want their information collected. Under the bill,...
Blog Post
2/28/2013
Posted by Jamie Court
A pro-consumer candidate to the Federal Trade Commission, who had the backing of the entire public interest community, really wanted the job. But this candidate didn’t want allies to go public for fear of alienating the White House. What happened?  Today POTUS hosed us and gave the keys to the FTC to corporate attorney Edith Ramirez....