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Senators Join Call to Investigate Google About Apps Sharing Kids' Private Info

Vic Gundotra, Google Senior Vice President of Engineering, talks about Google Plus at the Google I / O conference in San Francisco. Photo: AP / Paul Sakuma Pressure is mounting on U.S. regulators to investigate whether Google Play Store is currently distributing mobile apps that place children's personal information at risk. A complaint filed Tuesday with the Federal Trade Commission by almost two dozen consumers, privacy and public health groups alleges that Google allows apps that violate privacy laws to be downloaded by kids, according to the Associated Press. De gruppene sier at barna også har adgang til voksent innhold og eksponert for manipulative reklamepraksis. Now, a group of three U.S. lawmakers have joined the call. Senators Ed Markey, Richard Blumenthal, and Tom Udall, who are all Democrats, are pushing the FTC to initiate an investigation and determine whether Google violates the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA). "The FTC is statutorily obligated to enforce COPPA and protect American consumers from unfair and deceptive practices," the senators wrote in a letter to the FTC's five commissioners. "We have brought to your attention a number of pressing concerns that call into question Google's compliance with existing laws, and we encourage you to initiate an investigation into the aforementioned concerns as soon as possible." The lawmakers cited Tuesday's complaint- filed principally by the Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood and the Center for Digital Democracy, which states that some apps. Google labels suitable for kids are "sharing kids" sensitive personal information without the…

Vic Gundotra, Google Senior Vice President of Engineering, talks about Google Plus at the Google I / O conference in San Francisco. Photo: AP / Paul Sakuma

Pressure is mounting on U.S. regulators to investigate whether Google Play Store is currently distributing mobile apps that place children‘s personal information at risk.

A complaint filed Tuesday with the Federal Trade Commission by almost two dozen consumers, privacy and public health groups alleges that Google allows apps that violate privacy laws to be downloaded by kids, according to the Associated Press. De gruppene sier at barna også har adgang til voksent innhold og eksponert for manipulative reklamepraksis.

Now, a group of three U.S. lawmakers have joined the call. Senators Ed Markey, Richard Blumenthal, and Tom Udall, who are all Democrats, are pushing the FTC to initiate an investigation and determine whether Google violates the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA).

“The FTC is statutorily obligated to enforce COPPA and protect American consumers from unfair and deceptive practices,” the senators wrote in a letter to the FTC’s five commissioners. “We have brought to your attention a number of pressing concerns that call into question Google’s compliance with existing laws, and we encourage you to initiate an investigation into the aforementioned concerns as soon as possible.”

The lawmakers cited Tuesday’s complaint- filed principally by the Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood and the Center for Digital Democracy, which states that some apps. Google labels suitable for kids are “sharing kids” sensitive personal information without the required parent consent. “

Representative David Cicilline, a Democrat of Rhode Island, is also pushing for an investigation, the AP reported.

Google said it has removed thousands of apps this year from its “Designated for Families” (DFF) section, which requires COPPA compliance. En tredjedel af alle udviklere som har ansøgt om at have apps mærket “DFF” har blitt afvist, det sagde.

“Forældre ønsker at deres børn skal være sikre på nettet og vi jobber hardt for å beskytte dem. Apps in our Designed for Families program must comply with strict policies on content, privacy and advertising, and we take action on any policy violations that we find, “a Google spokesperson told Gizmodo. “Vi tar disse problemene svært alvorligt og fortsetter å jobbe hardt for å fjerne innhold som er uegnet for barn fra vår plattform.”

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4 afviklede Google en FTC-klage vedrørende urimelig praksis, der involverer børn. The company agreed to refund consumers $ 19 million in unauthorized charges that resulted from children downloading apps from the Play Store.

Gizmodo reached out to the FTC for comment, but has previously been informed that it’s policy not to discuss potential investigations based on consumer complaints.

Update, 5:05 pm: Added statement from Google.

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