Online Privacy Policy Update: FTC Gives Parents Greater Control With COPPA Amendments

By Eric Misterovich

The FTC has adopted new amendments to the Child Online Privacy Protection Act (“COPPA”), which provide parents with greater control over the collection and use of personal and personally identifiable information related to their children. The new amendments:

  1. Modify the definition of personal information under COPPA to include geolocational information, photos, and videos;
  2. Offer companies a more streamlined process for obtaining the “verified parental consent” needed to collect personal information from children;
  3. Closed a loophole, which allowed third party advertising networks to collect personal information from children without parental consent;
  4. Extended COPPA to cover certain specific third party advertisers;
  5. Extended COPPA to cover persistent identifiers, such as IP addresses and mobile device IDs, which can be traced across multiple websites;
  6. Increased security standards for the sharing of personal information;
  7. Require website operators to adopt policies for data retention and deletion; and
  8. Increase the FTC’s oversight of the self-regulation procedures contained within the Act.

The FTC has also changed numerous definitions within the Act, including the definitions of an “operator,” “website or online service directed to children,” “collection of personal information,” and “personal information.”

 

If your website is targeted at children under the age of 13, or if your website collects personal information from children under the age of 13, you may be required to comply with these new regulations. Consequently, it is important to contact an attorney to determine what, if any, modifications need to be made to your current privacy policy and procedures.

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