A New Jersey-based company, Aromaflage, and its owners have agreed to settle charges brought by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) regarding the company’s sale of sprays and candles that claim to be insect-repelling. According to the complaint, the company made false or unsubstantiated insect repellency claims, false establishment claims, and deceptive endorsement claims, and deceptively failed to disclose material connections with endorsers.
The Federal Trade Commission recently reached a settlement agreement over charges against an online marketing operation accused of deceptively luring consumers into expensive subscriptions by offering “free trials” of teeth-whiteners and related products. According to FTC, the defendants obtained consumers’ billing information under the pretense of a nominal fee before unexpectedly charging them up to $200 per month. The order imposes a judgment of over $92 million on the defendants and bans them from engaging in negative option sales in the future.
Negative option marketing refers to the practice of billing a consumer on a periodic, recurring basis for a product or service until the consumer affirmatively opts out of the subscription. While negative option marketing is legal when conducted appropriately, regulators are willing to pursue companies that abuse this practice.
Got blockchain? For many, the answer to this question is “no” but the technology and the medium of exchange built on it have arrived and many platforms and industries are looking to see how it can help facilitate transactions and allow for more efficiencies. Enter cryptocurrency, which relies upon blockchain technology, and is a secure, non-cash digital currency that is being considered in many industries as a form of payment or exchange for value. And, as often the case with newly implemented and much hyped technology, especially one that facilitates a financial transaction, the Federal Trade Commission is now paying attention.
San Francisco — Arent Fox LLP is pleased to announce the selection of Partner Sarah L. Bruno to the Daily Journal's inaugural list of the "Top Cyber/Artificial Intelligence Lawyers" in California. As noted by the Daily Journal, this ranking honors 20 attorneys who help thwart cyber threats by advising companies on best practices, navigating legal and regulatory mandates on privacy and data security, and responding to data incidents and breaches.
In a recent European Court of Justice Ruling, the court held that a test taker’s answers and an examiner’s comments with regard to those answers are personal data, while valuable proprietary test questions are not.
On December 20, 2017, in the case of Peter Nowak v. the Data Protection Commissioner, the ECJ handed down its decision regarding whether or not test responses from a candidate taking a professional examination are personal information under the EU 95/46/EC Directive on the protection of individuals with regard to the processing of personal data and on the free movement of such data. This case was referred to the ECJ by the Supreme Court of Ireland and the ECJ was asked to provide a preliminary ruling on the following:
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Belgium, Australia, the United Kingdom, and the State of Hawaii are looking into the lawfulness of “loot boxes” in mobile games. “Loot boxes” are virtual prize packages that may be purchased in mobile games where the player is unaware of what virtual items are inside the package until following the purchase. It is important to note that while several regulatory bodies have expressed some concern with this form of prizing, none have taken any formal action to ban them.
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Take out the microphone and get ready to record! Just don’t ask any personal questions and make sure that you’re prepared to then dump it all. This sums up the guidance provided by the Federal Trade Commission in a recently released Enforcement Policy. The Policy was released in response to frequently raised concerns from industry members regarding the need for developers of voice commanded technologies to comply with the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) Rule, particularly where such technologies are designed for home use and may record the voices of children. Under the Policy, the FTC has stated that it will not take action against companies that offer devices that can record the voice of children if several requirements are met:
Last month, the SEC announced the creation of a new “Cyber Unit” within the Enforcement Division to target misconduct related to cybersecurity. The unit is being created in conjunction with internal SEC initiatives to strengthen cybersecurity in the wake of the agency’s infamous data breach last year.
The latest question in privacy law is not what’s in a name (or IP address, PHI, TV viewing activity, etc.), but what’s on a face. Consumers are becoming increasingly concerned with how companies are using their biometric information such as facial, fingerprint, and iris information. In one closely watched case, photo sharing website Shutterfly faces allegations that it violated consumer privacy by collecting facial scans without consent.
Just as the Sword in the Stone could only be used by its rightful owner, the Privacy Shield can only be claimed by the rightfully certified entities. If not, false representations may stir Federal Trade Commission action. The FTC recently announced their first enforcement actions involving the EU-US Privacy Shield framework, settling complaints with three US companies.
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