Focus on Children’s Privacy by FTC and Plaintiffs Calls for Prioritizing COPPA

The FTC and private plaintiffs have sharpened their focus on children’s privacy and COPPA in recent months. Updated COPPA guidance and approval for changes to a valuable safe harbor program for companies have been issued by the FTC. In addition, private plaintiffs are attempting to find ways to bring civil suits based on COPPA concepts despite the lack of a private right of action in the regulation itself. Companies “absolutely need to start thinking very seriously about COPPA compliance and the FTC’s warning. If the FTC starts to make enforcement a priority, it can certainly take a lot of steps to impose hefty sanctions on companies that are found out of compliance,” Eimer Stahl partner Dan Birk told Cybersecurity Law Report. See also “Enforcing Consumer Consent: FTC Focuses on Location Tracking and Children’s Privacy” (Jul. 6, 2016). 

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