Category Archives: Privacy

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FTC Updates COPPA Compliance Guide; Emphasizes Broad Reach of Rule

Posted in Privacy
This month, the Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) updated its Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (“COPPA”) Rule Compliance Guide in its ongoing effort to ensure that COPPA reflects changes in technology, including the Internet of Things (“IoT”).  Although the FTC’s update confirms that COPPA applies to IoT devices, it does not provide meaningful guidance to operators… Continue Reading

UAS Takes Flight for Film Companies

Posted in Broadcast Technology, First Amendment, Privacy
Today, the Federal Aviation Administration (“FAA”) granted exemptions for six aerial photo and video production companies working in the movie and television industries to operate commercial unmanned aircraft systems (“UAS”) under specific conditions.  Under the current law, civil operation of UAS in U.S. airspace is banned unless the FAA grants an exemption under Section 333… Continue Reading

Yelp Settlement With FTC Over Alleged Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act Violations Highlights Possible Pitfalls of Age-Gating

Posted in Privacy
Recently, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) announced that Yelp, Inc., the online review service, has agreed to pay a civil penalty of $450,000 for failing to comply with the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA).  COPPA requires companies that collect information from children under 13 online to follow a number of steps to ensure that… Continue Reading

What to Expect From President Obama’s Executive Order on “Drone” Privacy

Posted in Broadcast Regulation, Broadcast Technology, First Amendment, Privacy
Last week, U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor suggested Americans should be more concerned about their privacy being invaded by the spread of drones, stating that “frightening” changes in surveillance technology should encourage citizens to take a more active role in the privacy debate.  She said she’s particularly troubled by the potential for commercial and… Continue Reading

Mobile App Security Should Be Part of The Privacy Policy

Posted in Privacy
Are you paying attention to the security features of your mobile apps? Earlier this year, the Federal Trade Commission announced consent decrees with two companies, Credit Karma and Fandango, for failing to take reasonable steps to secure their apps. Interestingly, the FTC specifically cited both companies for disabling the SSL certificate validation, which would have… Continue Reading

Data Breach Laws and Privacy Policies

Posted in Privacy
The attention and lawsuits – and executive suite changes – relating to the highly-publicized 2013 data security breaches experienced by Target and by Neiman Marcus serve as a pointed reminder of the need to attend to data security throughout a company’s operations, both online and offline.  What can a business do to guard against similar… Continue Reading

Mobile Apps Need Privacy Policies Too

Posted in Advertising Issues, Privacy
Seemingly everyone today makes available a smartphone mobile application.  What information does your company’s app collect?  Does it copy the user’s address book and, if so, why?  And, importantly, has your company’s privacy policy been updated to disclose these facts to users?  Where? Businesses should ensure that their mobile app privacy practices are reflected in… Continue Reading

Have You Updated Your Privacy Policy Lately?

Posted in Advertising Issues, Privacy
Although California’s Online Privacy Protection Act establishes in practical effect a national baseline for privacy policies, numerous other state laws, federal laws, compilations of industry best practices impose still other obligations on businesses and their privacy policies. Massachusetts and Nevada, for example, in recent years have enacted data security laws that may apply to personal… Continue Reading

Have New Laws Made Your Privacy Policy Obsolete And Incomplete?

Posted in Advertising Issues, Privacy
Even if a website’s data collection and sharing practices have not changed, laws and regulations do.  And a website’s privacy policy must keep pace. In particular, certain recent changes mean that most company privacy policies may no longer meet legal requirements.  For example, under recent amendments to the California Online Privacy Protection Act, commercial websites… Continue Reading

Do You Need To Update Your Privacy Policy?

Posted in Privacy
Since 2004, the California Online Privacy Protection Act (CalOPPA) has required commercial websites to “conspicuously post” an online privacy policy, labelled “privacy.”  The CalOPPA applies to commercial websites or online service with users residing in California – which in practice means nearly every commercial website operated in the United States. The privacy policy (more accurately,… Continue Reading

Risk Still Hovers Over Use of Drones for Newsgathering

Posted in Broadcast Technology, Privacy
In last night’s 60 Minutes piece, Drones Over America, Morley Safer aptly described the “drone show” as “part sci-fi, part video extravaganza, and part old-fashioned sales pitch, reflecting the steady movement of the technology from military to civilian use.”  Viewers saw breathtaking pictures of Niagara Falls, Greenwich Village, Times Square, and surfers in Hawaii.  I… Continue Reading

Drones for Commercial Use—Not Yet Legally Off the Ground

Posted in Broadcast Regulation, Broadcast Technology, First Amendment, Privacy, Spectrum
Drones are making headlines.  Following the story of the off-duty Connecticut television station photographer who has now filed a federal lawsuit against the Harford police alleging civil rights violations because they stopped him from using his drone at the scene of a fatal car accident, I’m reflecting.  Back to the days when I was advocating… Continue Reading

FTC Approves New Method of Obtaining Parental Consent for Websites

Posted in Advertising Issues, Broadcast Regulation, Privacy
Last month, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) approved a new method for companies to use when obtaining parents’ consent for their children to provide personal information through online services covered by the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA).  The method, known as “knowledge-based authentication” can now be used to verify that the person providing consent… Continue Reading

Predicting the Media Landscape in 2014

Posted in Broadcast Attribution, Broadcast Regulation, Copyright, First Amendment, Privacy, Program Content
2013 proved to be a transformative year for the media industry.  We saw the M&A market heat up, with Sinclair, Gannett, Tribune, and Gray all growing their broadcast portfolios, while iconic names such as Belo, Fisher, and Allbritton either departed or entered into agreements to depart the broadcast field.  This past year saw digital rights… Continue Reading

Look for Mobile App Privacy Disclosures To Change Soon

Posted in Privacy
If you publish a mobile app for consumers, you should be aware that for the past year a diverse group of stakeholders have, under the auspices of the National Telecommunications and Information Administration, been developing a code of conduct for “short notice” disclosures of important privacy practices.  That process is now moving to testing and,… Continue Reading

FTC Sends Warning Letters To App Developers Re New COPPA Regulations

Posted in Privacy
The Federal Trade Commission staff has sent “educational” letters to more than 90 businesses that may be affected by the revisions to FTC’s Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act rules that take effect on July 1, 2013.  For a summary of the extensive changes, see http://www.wileyrein.com/publications.cfm?sp=articles&newsletter=4&id=8582.)   In its letters, which were sent to mobile app developers,… Continue Reading

New COPPA Regulations To Take Effect On July 1

Posted in Privacy
Websites and app developers are on notice that the Federal Trade Commission’s revised rule implementing the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act will take effect on July 1, 2013 as scheduled.  A recent Privacy In Focus article explained how websites and app developers have little time left in which to implement the potentially extensive and expensive… Continue Reading