CCFC Lauds New Proposed Online Privacy Safeguards for Children

Date of Release: 

Thursday, September 15, 2011

September 15, 2011
Contact: Josh Golin (617-896-9369; josh@commercialfreechildhood.org)
For Immediate Release

CCFC Lauds New Proposed Online Privacy Safeguards for Children

BOSTON – September 15 –Today, the Federal Trade Commission proposed important changes to the implementation of the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA), the 1998 law designed to protect the personal information of children under 13. 

Below is a statement from the Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood on the FTC’s Notice of Proposed Rulemaking.

We commend the FTC for rightly recognizing that children need more safeguards for their privacy in today’s digital landscape.  Given that there are currently so few regulations protecting children from unscrupulous marketing techniques, it is critical that the rules for COPPA be updated to include new media including mobile devices. The FTC’s proposal would empower parents to keep their children safe. Most important, companies could not track children online through cookies or other techniques used for behavioral advertising. In addition, the proposed rules would further protect children by treating a child’s geolocation as protected information.

Given that children are uniquely vulnerable to advertising, it is imperative that they are protected from stealth marketing techniques, which even escape the notice of many adults.  The FTC’s proposed new rules would reinforce parents’ role as gatekeepers by providing them with tools for much-needed control over how and whether their children’s private information is used across digital platforms.