FTC Announces Proposed Revisions to Children's Online Privacy Protection Act Rule


On September 15, 2011, the Federal Trade Commission ("FTC," or "the Commission") announced proposed changes to the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act Rule (the "COPPA Rule"). It is seeking public comment on proposed amendments to the COPPA Rule, which gives parents control over what personal information websites may collect from children under age 13. The FTC's purpose was to modernize the COPPA Rule in order to take into account technological changes. Written comments must be received on or before November 28, 2011.

Here are the five general categories in which the COPPA Rule would be modified:


• The COPPA Rule requires covered operators to obtain parental consent before collecting personal information from children. The FTC proposes updating the definition of "personal information" to include geolocation information and certain types of persistent identifiers used for functions other than the website's internal operations, such as tracking cookies used for behavioral advertising.

• In addition, the Commission proposes modifying the definition of "collection" so operators may allow children to participate in interactive communities, without parental consent, so long as the operators take reasonable measures to delete all or virtually all children's personal information before it is made public.

Please see full alert below for more information.

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DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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