All Posts Tagged Tag: ‘FTC’

FTC Reportedly Looking At Google’s Android Business

FTC Reportedly Looking At Google’s Android Business

Google is back in the eye of the Federal Trade Commission, this time for its Android business, which has also been drawing scrutiny from government regulators around the world. Regulators are investigating if Google is employing anticompetitive practices as its Android operating system dominates market share. Bloomberg Business reports: Google Inc. is back under U.S. antitrust scrutiny as officials ask …

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Uber: We Don’t Collect Background Location Data, But We Might at Some Point

On July 15, Uber is putting a new privacy statement into effect, and part of it is raising some eyebrows. A few paragraphs down in the new policy, under the heading “Collection of Information”, you’ll find this: Location Information: When you use the Services for transportation or delivery, we collect precise location data about the trip from the Uber app …

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Google’s YouTube Kids App Isn’t That Kid-Friendly According to Consumer Groups

In April, a group of consumer advocate groups including The Center for Digital Democracy (CDD), Campaign for a Commercial Free Childhood (CCFC), American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, Center for Science in the Public Interest, Children Now, Consumer Federation of America, Consumer Watchdog, and Public Citizen called on the Federal Trade Commission to open up an investigation against Google’s …

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FTC: Controversial Wall Street Journal Google Article ‘Misleading’

On Wednesday, The Wall Street Journal published an inflammatory report under the title “Google Makes Most of Close Ties to White House,” which attempts to make the case that Google was able to sway the outcome of the FTC’s antitrust investigation into the company in 2012. The publication recently published a leaked document from the investigation, which appeared to suggest …

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Old Report About Old Google Test Ruffles Feathers

An algorithm change Google probably only used in a limited test roughly eight years ago is apparently the top story in tech this morning. It will likely give Google’s competitors more talking points, but probably won’t make a lot of difference in any other way. The Wall Street Journal got its hands on a “previously undisclosed report by staffers at …

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Yelp: FTC Closes Investigation, Takes No Action

Yelp announced on Tuesday that the U.S. Federal Trade Commission has closed an investigation into the company’s business practices without taking any action against it. Last spring, the FTC published a letter stating that it had received over 2,000 complaints filed against Yelp since 2008. This was made available in response to a Freedom of Information Act request made by …

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FTC Settles Charges Against Snapchat

The U.S. Federal Trade Commission announced on Wednesday that it has approved a final order settling charges that Snapchat deceived consumers with promises about the disappearing nature of messages sent through its service. This follows a public comment period. The FTC’s complaint was announced in May. It also alleged that Snapchat deceived consumers over the amount of personal data it …

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FTC Doesn’t Like When You Ask Employees To Tweet Promotional Content Without Disclosure

Ad agencies may want to steer clear of asking employees to post positive messages about clients without disclosing their affiliation with campaigns. The Federal Trade Commission may not take too kindly to it. Last week, Sony Computer Entertainment America reached a settlement with the FTC over charges that it deceived consumers with false advertising claims about the “game changing” technological …

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Report: FTC Is Concerned About Google’s DoubleClick

Google purchased DoubleClick back in 2007. While it was enough to draw heavy scrutiny from the Federal Trade Commission, the FTC ultimately gave the deal a greenlight as it couldn’t find any grounds to prevent it from going through. That was not without stipulation, however. The FTC said at the time, “The markets within the online advertising space continue to …

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Unlimited Data Plan Scam Causing FTC To Sue AT&T

AT&T is being sued by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) for misleading their customers into believing that they were receiving an “unlimited data plan” when they were really having their internet speeds decreased by up to 90 percent. On Tuesday, October 28, the FTC filed a complaint against the company at the U.S. District Court in San Francisco, California, explaining …

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Yelp Pays FTC $450K After Child Privacy Violation

Yelp reached a settlement with the U.S. Federal Trade Commission over the violation of child privacy law. The company had enabled kids under 13 (some even 9 and under reportedly) to sign up for its service, collecting their email addresses with parental consent. This apparently went on from 2009 to 2013. Yelp paid a reported $450,000 fine. According to ComputerWorld, …

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FairSearch Shares Panel Videos About Google Probe

The FairSearch coalition convened this week in Washington D.C. for a panel to discuss U.S. and EU competition policies, and the next steps in the European Google investigation. The panel criticized the FTC’s investigation, which led to a settlement with Google that competitors found unfavorable, as well as antitrust issues, and the potential for future action by the EU, U.S., …

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Facebook Emotion Experiment Prompts Senator’s Letter To FTC

Senator Mark Warner (D-Va.) has written a letter to the Federal Trade Commission regarding Facebook’s controversial emotion experiment, seeking to have the commission examine the ordeal. “I come from the technology world, and I understand that social media companies are looking for ways to extract value from the information willingly provided by their huge customer base,” said Warner. “I don’t …

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FTC Files Suit Against Amazon Over In-App Charges

The United States Federal Trade Commission has filed a lawsuit seeking a court order requiring Amazon to refund consumers for unauthorized charges from in-app payments made by kids without parents’ knowledge. The suit alleges that Amazon billed parents and other account holders for millions of dollars in such charges, and wants to see Amazon banned from billing them for in-app …

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WhatsApp Hits 500 Million Users, 700 Million Photos Shared Daily

Messaging app WhatsApp has just announced a huge milestone–they’ve topped half a billion “regular, active” users. And those users are sharing more than 700 million photos and 100 million videos every day. “Thanks to all of you, half a billion people around the world are now regular, active WhatsApp users. In the last few months, we’ve grown fastest in countries …

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FTC to Facebook: Don’t Screw with User Privacy After WhatsApp Acquisition

Today, Facebook Chief Privacy Officer Erin Egan and WhatsApp General Counsel Anne Hoge received a diplomatic, but pointed letter from Jessica Rich, the Federal Trade Commussion’s Bureau of Consumer Protection head. And the TL;DR version is this: don’t screw with user privacy when this acquisition goes through (and if you do, you have to let them know and make it …

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FTC Has Seen 2,046 Complaints About Yelp In Recent Years

The FTC disclosed this week that there have been 2,046 complaints filed against Yelp dating from 2008 to March 4th, 2014. While that may seem like a lot, it’s not incredibly shocking given that we see businesses complaining informally about the site pretty much every week. Has your experience with Yelp been positive or negative? Let us know in the …

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Identity Theft on the Rise this Tax Season, IRS Warns

Identity theft is on the rise this tax season as millions of Americans file tax returns and claim their refunds. In February, the Internal Revenue Service placed identity theft at the top of their “Dirty Dozen” tax scams list. Criminals simply use their victims’ names and social security numbers to receive the corresponding tax return. The IRS isn’t the only …

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Identity Theft is Top Complaint of Consumers in 2013

Each year, the Federal Trade Commission collects data on consumer complaints and analyzes said data in order to improve consumer experiences in the United States. And for the 14th consecutive year, identity theft tops the charts as the most reported consumer complaint in the US. The FTC defines identity theft as that which “happens when someone steals your personal information …

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Google’s Nest Acquisition Gets FTC Approval

The U.S. Federal Trade Commission has granted Google permission to acquire Nest Labs. Google and Nest announced the deal last month. Google is acquiring the company, which makes smart home devices like smoke detectors and thermostats, for $3.2 billion in cash. “Nest’s founders, Tony Fadell and Matt Rogers, have built a tremendous team that we are excited to welcome into …

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Apple Pays $32.5 Mil. To Parents Who Didn’t Consent

Unintentional (or intentional) digital purchases have been a rising epidemic for parents who’ve allowed their offspring free reign over their iTunes login and credit card. Last Wednesday, the U.S. Federal Trade Commission announced that Apple Inc. will refund at least $32.5 million to U.S. consumers after ongoing complaints were made about charges concerning children purchasing mobile apps without their parents’ …

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Will Lawmakers Use The Target Hack To Give The FTC More Power?

Target, one of the nation’s largest retailers, suffered a major security breach over the holiday shopping season that affected millions of its in-store customers. In fact, it’s estimated that 40 million dedit and card card accounts were stolen. It’s already a given that Target will be paying for this breach of trust for years to come, but will it lead …

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Native Advertising Consumption Has Jumped 44% Over The Last Few Months

As previously reported, the FTC held a workshop on the topic of native advertising this week called “Blurred Lines: Advertising or Content”. The Commission warned publishers and advertisers that some of these ads may be illegal, and encouraged them to make sure they’re disclosing ads properly. In wake of the event, Kontera, a company that measures content and social media …

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FTC Warns Publishers About Illegal Native Advertising

The U.S. Federal Trade Commission held a workshop on native advertising on Wednesday called “Blurred Lines: Advertising or Content”. The workshop was designed to examine the practice of blending sponsored stories in with editorial content, and brought together publishing and advertising industry representatives, consumer advocates, academics and self-regulatory organizations. The workshop was free and open to the public, and apparently …

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Consumer Watchdog Complains About Google Again

Frequent Google critic Consumer Watchdog (the ones behind the legendary Eric Schmidt evil ice cream man video) has filed a new formal complaint against Google with the Federal Trade Commission. This time it’s about Google Shopping results. The organization calls the way Google displays results from Google Shopping “deceptive and unfair”. “The way that the Internet giant is featuring results …

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Google Privacy Changes Draw Suspicion, Senator Pens Letter to FTC

One U.S. Senator wants the Federal Trade Commission to take another look at Google, this time for privacy changes the company announced last week that will allow them to use your name and face in advertisements. Senator Ed Markey (D-MA) has written a letter to FTC Chairwoman Edith Ramirez, asking her to look into whether or not Google’s new Terms …

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Nomorobo to the Robocall Rescue!

The latest tool in the battle against solicitor calls is Nomorobo, which went live as of yesterday. The goal of ‘no more robo’ is ultimately preventing robocalls, those calls that the FTC Do-Not-Call lists were supposed to take care of (according to Gizmag, the FTC receives about 200,000 robocall complaints a month). The service is free, but not many phone …

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Google’s Waze Deal Won’t Face Antitrust Issues [REPORT]

Google looks to be in the clear concerning their recent acquisition of Israel-based navigation company Waze, according to a report from Bloomberg. They cite sources familiar with the matter who say that antitrust regulators will not challenge Google on the purchase, which took place this past June. Google has gone so far as to say that Waze’s team will remain …

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Should The Government Regulate Paid Content?

Online advertising has changed. It used to be that Web sites would have a few banner ads or side bar ads to bring in revenue. Then consumers started to use adblockers and other methods to ignore these ads. That’s when sites turned to native advertising, and it’s caught the FTC’s attention. The Federal Trade Commission announced on Monday that it …

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Infomercial Mogul Trudeau Found in Contempt of Court

If the Federal Trade Commission is to be believed, Kevin Trudeau is a snake oil salesman the likes of which have not been seen since the days of the wild west in America. A true miracle-elixir-slinging Perrelli of the first order, Trudeau has made millions – maybe hundreds of millions – off selling books and products to people that claim …

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