Tags: toymakers | tracking | kids | online

Toymakers Tracking Kids Online Fined; Nickelodeon TV, Too

Image: Toymakers Tracking Kids Online Fined; Nickelodeon TV, Too

(Screengrab combo: Mylittlepony.hasbro.com, mattel.com, nickjr.com)

By    |   Thursday, 15 Sep 2016 06:19 AM

Toymakers accused of allowing the tracking of kids online have agreed to implement reforms and pay fines of $835,000 combined, New York Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman announced Tuesday.

Schneiderman charged that Viacom, Inc.; Mattel, Inc.; Hasbro Inc.; and JumpStart Games, Inc. violated the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act by allowing third-party vendors, such as marketers and advertising companies, to track children's online activities on their websites.

The toy companies included some of the most popular children's websites associated with "Nick Jr. and Nickelodeon (Viacom); Barbie, Hot Wheels, and American Girl (Mattel); Neopets (JumpStart); and My Little Pony, Littlest Pet Shop, and Nerf (Hasbro)," according to a statement from Schneiderman's office.

The settlement was part of a two-year investigation by the attorney general's office dubbed Operation Child Tracker.

"Federal law demands that children are off-limits to the prying eyes of advertisers," Schneiderman said in his statement. "Operation Child Tracker revealed that some of our nation's biggest companies failed to protect kids' privacy and shield them from illegal online tracking. My office remains committed to protecting children online and will continue our investigation to hold accountable those who violate the law by tracking children."

Schneiderman said during a news conference that the companies agreed to reform measures that will ensure they comply with the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act and only work with outside vendors who will follow the law as well, according to Wired magazine.

"We used to worry about our children wandering into bad neighborhoods, now our children live online," Schneiderman said at the news conference, per Wired. "We have to deal with this the same way we deal with street crime."

Wired stated that the agreement with the toy company requires them to conduct regular audits of their sites to ensure that tracking tools have been introduced to monitor activities of its visitors and vet the past practices of all third-party vendors.

"In enacting COPPA, Congress wisely provided for law enforcement by both the (Federal Trade Commission) and state attorneys general, so that there are multiple cops on the beat protecting children's privacy," Jessica Rich, director of the Federal Trade Commission's Bureau of Consumer Protection said in Schneiderman's statement.

"We applaud these important actions by the New York attorney general's office, and appreciate their coordination with the commission. These settlements send a strong message to companies about the importance of complying with the COPPA rule."

Hasbro spokeswoman Julie Duffy told Bloomberg that her company cooperated with the investigation and is committed to protecting the privacy of those who visit their website.

"We will be more closely vetting and monitoring companies that work on our behalf," Duffy said in a statement, according to Bloomberg. "We are rolling out a new, stricter online privacy protection policy for our partners, and enacting new protocols and technology to scan our digital properties for any cookies, widgets or other applications that may violate our policy."

© 2017 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

 
1Like our page
2Share
TheWire
Toymakers accused of allowing the tracking of kids online have agreed to implement reforms and pay fines of $835,000 combined, New York Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman announced Tuesday.
toymakers, tracking, kids, online
482
2016-19-15
Thursday, 15 Sep 2016 06:19 AM
Newsmax Inc.
 

Newsmax, Moneynews, Newsmax Health, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, and Newsmax World are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

NEWSMAX.COM
America's News Page
© Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved