Apps Aimed at Kids Are Collecting Personal Data

Although mobiles apps aimed at children usually require parental consent, most parents probably aren’t aware that these apps are tracking and collecting data on their kids. A US bill was introduced in 2013 to protect children from such privacy violations, but many companies are circumventing this law.

Jeff Chester, Executive Director of the Center for Digital Democracy, warned, “Kids are such a lucrative market, especially for apps. Unfortunately, there are still companies out there that are more concerned about generating revenue than protecting the privacy of kids.” In 2013, the Federal Trade Commission revised the Child Online Privacy Protection Act, expanding it to require parental consent for apps to collect data from anyone younger than 13, including phone number, phone identification data, and location.

“It’s upped the ante for companies deciding whether they are going to market to kids,” Michelle De Mooy, ‎Deputy Director of the Center for Democracy and Technology, said. “And that’s a good thing.” Kandi Parsons, attorney in the FTC Bureau of Consumer Protection, assures that the FTC is doing all it can to protect children, saying, “Our ultimate goal is compliance… [But] that doesn’t undermine our desire to bring cases against companies that violate COPPA… [W]here we find violations, we will bring cases against mobile apps.”

Source: CTV News