Mobile Apps Federal Trade Commission

News & Analysis as of

FTC settles case against Vulcun for installing apps on users’ phones without permission

On February 5, 2016, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) announced that it has agreed to settle its case against Vulcun alleging that it “unfairly replaced a popular web browser game with a program that installed applications...more

It’s all fun and games until someone gets hit with a hefty FTC fine

Two developers of mobile apps for children recently learned an expensive lesson about their legal responsibilities when it comes to protecting children’s privacy. Together, the companies will pay a total of $360,000 in...more

Serious Games Require Serious Attention to Marketing Statements

Lumos Labs recently paid $2 million to the FTC to settle claims that it deceived consumers about its brain training application’s ability to increase cognitive function. According to the FTC, the company alleged that its...more

Two mobile app developers collect persistent identifiers and pay out $360,000 in fines for COPPA violations

LAI Systems, LLC (LAI) and Retro Dreamer agreed to pay civil penalties of a combined $360,000 to settle charges issued by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) that they violated the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act...more

FTC Takes Action against App Developers on COPPA Allegations Involving Persistent Identifiers

The FTC has announced enforcement actions against two app developers that allegedly violated the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) by using persistent identifiers to serve advertising to children. The...more

The FTC Won’t Let Them Be: Enforcement Action Brought Against App Developers for Violation of Children’s Privacy Law Presents New...

In a recent show of force—which some believe is the tip of the iceberg—the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) brought an enforcement action against two mobile application (app) developers for violating the Children’s Online...more

Navigating Privacy 'Must Haves' and 'Should Haves' in the Mobile App Environment

On November 30, WilmerHale addressed key privacy issues in the mobile app environment as part of the firm's Cybersecurity, Privacy and Communications Practice Webinar Series. We discussed how to navigate the quickly...more

Advertising Law - November 2015 #4

Sharing Is Caring? New Report Documents Apps Sharing User Data at High Rates - A new report has revealed that Apple and Android apps share information with third parties at high rates. Testing 55 of the most popular...more

Privacy Tip #8 – How teachers can assist students to be safe online

It is scary to read the headlines that kids become victims of crimes, some of them horrific, because of online activity. Kids are naive and susceptible to online predators. Parents must be vigilant in educating their children...more

Mobile Location Analytics: Changing the Game for Brick and Mortar Retail

For brick-and-mortar retailers, smart phones have taken on an entirely new role in customers’ shopping experiences. A technology known as "mobile location analytics" ("MLA") or sometimes, "indoor analytics," gives brick and...more

Advertising Law - October 2015 #4

Eleventh Circuit Rejects Application of VPPA to Free App - The latest decision interpreting the application of the Video Privacy Protection Act in the context of twenty-first century technology provides positive news for...more

Advertising Law - October 2015 #2

"Flying Rabbi" Suit Crash Lands in NY Appellate Court - A New York man was unsuccessful in his lawsuit accusing Jimmy Kimmel of misappropriating his image during a skit on the late night TV show, Jimmy Kimmel...more

Online Endorsements and “Astroturfing”

Having warned consumers: “Don’t buy into fake online endorsements” last year, the Competition Bureau sent a strong message to the media and marketing industry against astroturfing yesterday.  The Bureau announced that it has...more

Socially Aware: The Social Media Law Update Volume 6, Issue 4

Five social media law issues to discuss with your clients - The explosive growth of social media has clients facing legal questions that didn’t even exist a few short years ago. Helping your clients navigate this...more

Does Your Website Privacy Policy Need Some Love?

Everyone does it, especially startups. You need a privacy policy for your website, and your legal budget is limited. Hop onto Facebook (or Google, or Amazon) — cut, paste and voilà! — your startup has a shiny new privacy...more

FTC Addresses Sharing Economy Following June Workshop

Federal Trade Commission Chairwoman Edith Ramirez recently made statements regarding regulation of the developing “sharing economy” exemplified by on-demand apps and websites such as Uber and Airbnb that connect sellers of a...more

Advertising Law - September 2015 #2

FTC Reviews Kids’ Apps for Privacy Progress - Three years after conducting a survey on apps directed to children, the Federal Trade Commission’s Office of Technology Research and Investigation decided to check back with...more

FTC Chairwoman Ramirez Urges Start-Ups to Establish a “Culture of Security”

On September 9, FTC Chairwoman Edith Ramirez delivered remarks at the Start For Security workshop, an FTC initiative intended to provide start-ups and developers with the resources and information necessary to integrate...more

Is My Telehealth App Subject to HIPAA?

Many telehealth and mHealth app developers are concerned about whether or not their app is a medical device under FDA regulations (and rightfully so), they often pay less attention to the Health Insurance Portability and...more

Advertising Law - July 2015 #3

Harlem Globetrotters Get an Assist From CARU - In a rare loss, the Harlem Globetrotters agreed, at the direction of the Children's Advertising Review Unit (CARU), that their age-screening practices for the company's...more

Mobile App Developer Settles with FTC and New Jersey AG Over Virtual Currency Mining

On June 29, a mobile app developer entered into an agreement with the FTC and the New Jersey AG to settle allegations that the developer engaged in deceptive and unfair practices by marketing its rewards app, called “Prized,”...more

Merchants and Processors Beware: FTC Consumer Warning About Use of Bitcoin and Other Cryptocurrencies Is a Warning to You Too

The June 22 FTC blog posting warning consumers about the use of bitcoins and other virtual currencies should be a call to action for those accepting or facilitating the acceptance of bitcoin and other virtual currencies in...more

The Nuts and Bolts of Digital Advertising

“We have the best mobile app on the market!” “Subscribe now and win an Apple watch!” “Download our software and we guarantee an increase in your business within 30 days!” That all sounds quite wonderful, actually. Where do I...more

Digital Advertising Alliance Focuses on Mobile Ads

As more users spend more time on their mobile devices, advertising dollars are following. And the compliance regime that governs interest-based advertising (IBA) (formerly referred to as online behavioral advertising or OBA)...more

Advertising Law - May 2015 #5

DAA Mobile Privacy Code Enforcement Begins In September - Get ready: September 1 marks the beginning of enforcement of the Digital Advertising Alliance’s mobile privacy code, the group recently announced. Companies will...more

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