By: Jeff Chester | Mar 20 2014
Here's a summary from our attorney Eric Null at Institute for Public Representation, Georgetown University Law Center:
By: Jeff Chester | Mar 18 2014
By: Jeff Chester | Mar 6 2014
We urge you to review the attached FTC complaint that was filed today by EPIC and CDD. The millions of WhatsApp users who signed up for the service were promised--repeatedly as you will read in the complaint--that the company didn't want to gather and commercialize their data. They posed as the "unFacebook," deriding the commercial surveillance apparatus that lies at the core of contemporary online practices. Yet at the same time they made their public privacy promises, they were being
By: Jeff Chester | Feb 24 2014
More than 40 groups sent a letter to President Obama today on the second anniversary of the Administration's promise it would seek a new "Consumer Privacy Bill of Rights." Although the President said in 2012 that "we can't wait" for such new safeguards, so far the Administration has failed to deliver proposed legislative language. Civil rights, civil liberties, consumer, privacy and child advocacy groups signed the letter, which urged the President t
By: Jeff Chester | Feb 13 2014
Feb. 13, 2014Facebook Settlement Endangers Kids and Breaks Law in Seven States, Public Interest Groups, Parents Tell 9th Circuit
Children’s Privacy Organization Denounces Settlement, Refuses Money
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Consumer, children’s safety, digital privacy groups and parents are urging a federal appeals court to toss out a settlement agreement that permits Facebook to use kids’ pictures in ads without the consent of their parents – which is illegal in seven states.
By: Jeff Chester | Feb 10 2014
This letter was sent today to John Holdren, the director of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, and was signed by 25 groups. It calls on the White House to include a public comment period as part of its current 90-day "Big Data" review announced by the President during his speech on NSA reforms. It coincides as well with a meeting planned today on the issue led by John Podesta.
By: Jeff Chester | Jan 28 2014
excerpt via Exchangewire: Privacy awareness body Truste has today (28 January) released its annual Consumer Confidence Index, revealing 60% of participants in the survey were more concerned about their online privacy compared to 12 months ago, with 89% actively “avoiding” companies they don’t believe protect their privacy adequately....However, it seems that contagion has spread to the private sector too, as there are three times as many survey participants concerned about companies
By: Jeff Chester | Jan 22 2014
When Facebook proposed to change its data use practices late last August, we wrote a number of papers to help the FTC. This is one of them, which discusses the company's ad practices and its relationship to its privacy claims. This paper addresses a number of Facebook data use and digital marketing strategies, and their impact on user privacy.
By: Jeff Chester | Jan 15 2014
“The Federal Trade Commission’s investigation of Apple sheds light on a growing practice that poses risks to children and families,” commented Jeff Chester, Executive Director of the Center for Digital Democracy. “Children are spending increasing amounts of time with mobile apps, generating potentially huge profits for the rapidly expanding gaming and app industries. In-app purchasing is becoming the dominant business model in many online games and other children’s entertainment content on mobile phones, tablets and gaming devices. Yet the techniques used to trigger these purchases are,
By: Jeff Chester | Dec 16 2013
U.S. online marketing companies are pioneering the dramatic expansion of data collection throughout the world, as they gather, analyze, and make actionable all of our information. Giants such as Google and Facebook effectively become “private NSAs”—tracking us on social media, mobile devices, search engines, online games, and increasingly even when we are in the grocery or department store. Telephone companies involved with the NSA’s “bulk” data-collection program are expanding their own data gathering on the Internet and mobile devices as well.