FTC: FTC issues illuminating report on digital dark patterns

FTC: FTC issues illuminating report on digital dark patterns. “As the FTC’s 2021 workshop, Bringing Dark Patterns to Light, and recent academic literature establish, dark patterns take on a variety of nefarious guises – for example, hiding the full cost of a transaction behind nondescript dropdown arrows or small icons, sending people on a digital scavenger hunt just to cancel a subscription, using default settings to subvert their privacy choices, or even sneaking stuff into customers’ shopping carts without their knowledge.”

FTC: FTC Sues Kochava for Selling Data that Tracks People at Reproductive Health Clinics, Places of Worship, and Other Sensitive Locations

FTC: FTC Sues Kochava for Selling Data that Tracks People at Reproductive Health Clinics, Places of Worship, and Other Sensitive Locations. “The Federal Trade Commission filed a lawsuit against data broker Kochava Inc. for selling geolocation data from hundreds of millions of mobile devices that can be used to trace the movements of individuals to and from sensitive locations.”

Ars Technica: FTC aims to counter the “massive scale” of online data collection

Ars Technica: FTC aims to counter the “massive scale” of online data collection. “The Federal Trade Commission has kicked off the rulemaking process for privacy regulations that could restrict online surveillance and punish bad data-security practices. It’s a move that some privacy advocates say is long overdue, as similar Congressional efforts face endless uncertainty.”

Engadget: US Congress calls for the FTC to regulate how VPN companies operate

Engadget: US Congress calls for the FTC to regulate how VPN companies operate. “US Democrats have urged the FTC (Federal Trade Commission) to crack down on deceptive practices in the Virtual Private Network (VPN) industry, The Verge has reported. In an open letter, Rep. Anna Eshoo (D-CA) and Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR) cited research indicating that three-quarters of the most popular VPNs ‘misrepresented their products,’ leading consumers to a false sense of security.”

Vox: TikTok is full of shady secret advertisements

Vox: TikTok is full of shady secret advertisements. “Influencer Marketing Factory bills itself as ‘the influencer marketing expert’ and did not respond to multiple requests for comment. The company says it has done TikTok campaigns for everything from fitness apps to mushroom coffee. Some influencers labeled those posts as ads or partnerships. Many didn’t. All of them should have, according to truth in advertising rules that are supposed to be enforced by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and state attorneys general.”

FTC: FTC Report Warns About Using Artificial Intelligence to Combat Online Problems

FTC: FTC Report Warns About Using Artificial Intelligence to Combat Online Problems . “The use of AI, particularly by big tech platforms and other companies, comes with limitations and problems of its own. The report outlines significant concerns that AI tools can be inaccurate, biased, and discriminatory by design and incentivize relying on increasingly invasive forms of commercial surveillance.”

Engadget: FTC fines Twitter $150 million for ‘deceptive’ ad targeting

Engadget: FTC fines Twitter $150 million for ‘deceptive’ ad targeting. “Twitter has paid a $150 million fine to the FTC over its ‘deceptive’ use of user data for targeted advertising. The fine stems from the company’s admission in 2019 that it had for years used Twitter users’ phone numbers and email addresses provided for two-factor authentication to also serve targeted ads.”

Reuters: U.S. FTC accuses Intuit of deceptively advertising free tax filing

Reuters: U.S. FTC accuses Intuit of deceptively advertising free tax filing. “The U.S. Federal Trade Commission asked a court on Monday to issue an order stopping Intuit, the owner of TurboTax tax preparation software, from deceptively advertising free tax filing when it requires many people to pay. In the complaint, filed in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, the FTC, which enforces antitrust law and laws against deceptive advertising, said it had already started an internal administrative proceeding on the matter.”

CNET: FTC Takes Action Against WW for Collecting Children’s Health Data

CNET: FTC Takes Action Against WW for Collecting Children’s Health Data. “The US Federal Trade Commission is requiring WW International — the company previously known as Weight Watchers — and its Kurbo App to permanently delete data it collected through a weight loss app used by kids as young as eight. Children’s personal health data was collected without the permission of parents or guardians, the FTC said in a complaint filed against the company in February in the District Court in the Northern District of California.”

FTC: Cure COVID with an herbal beverage? A falsi-tea, says the FTC

FTC: Cure COVID with an herbal beverage? A falsi-tea, says the FTC. “Two years into the pandemic and you thought you’d seen it all? How about an herbal tea that claims to cure COVID in 24-48 hours? It’s a representation the FTC says is steeped in deception. So we’ve joined forces with the FDA and the Department of Justice to file suit in federal court to challenge – among other things – allegedly false and deceptive claims that Earth Tea cures COVID-19 and that the defendants have clinical proof to back up their promises.”