FTC

TRENDnet lax webcam security prompts first FTC action on connected home devices

TRENDnet lax webcam security prompts first FTC action on connected home devices

The Federal Trade Commission has made its first ever action against a maker of connected everyday devices, TRENDnet, for what it says is lax security despite promises stating otherwise. TRENDnet makes a variety of wireless webcams, connected home security cameras, and other such devices that connect to the Internet, devices that the FTC states left consumers' personal feeds open to public eyes.

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FTC tells search engines to better distinguish ads from results

FTC tells search engines to better distinguish ads from results

Whether you use Google or Yahoo! or some other search engine entirely, you've likely found yourself at some point clicking on a link, believing it to be a search result, only to be taken to what is obviously an advertisement, feeling annoyed all the while. This has become a more common problem over time as design changes make it harder to tell what results are money-backed, and in light of such the FTC is telling companies to make sure the distinction is clear.

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Google Waze grab gets FTC interest: Investigation tipped

Google Waze grab gets FTC interest: Investigation tipped

Google's acquisition of Waze, the social-powered mapping app, has prompted US Federal Trade Commission interest in the deal and the possibility of a full investigation, it's been revealed. The search giant confirmed that it had been contacted by the FTC to Bloomberg, after rumors over the past few days that the reportedly $1.1bn purchase of the Israeli company could prompt more regulatory headaches than Google expected.

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President Obama’s war against patent trolls gets lawmaker support

President Obama’s war against patent trolls gets lawmaker support

A few days ago, the Obama administration announced that they would be cracking down on patent abusers by making some changes to the US Patent and Trademark Office, as well as get the International Trade Commission involved to help fight against frivolous complaints by tech companies to get import bans on competitor products. Several lawmakers are joining the war as well, urging the Federal Trade Commission to crack down on patent trolls.

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Google under investigation by FTC over advertisements

Google under investigation by FTC over advertisements

Google is once again under FTC scrutiny, this time over its advertisement methods and whether it is using them to harm its competition, something that is separate from the issue closed earlier this year concerning whether it was in violation of antitrust laws. For now it remains a preliminary investigation, and there's no word on whether the agency has pegged Google as having broken any laws.

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FTC begins COPPA warning mail-blast as child app rules approach

FTC begins COPPA warning mail-blast as child app rules approach

The Federal Trade Commission has begun warning app developers that they must bring their software in-line with the upcoming Children's Online Privacy Protection Rule, firing out letters highlighting new expectations for titles that can include multimedia of underage users. Over ninety letters have been sent, to both US and foreign developers, the FTC said this week, notifying them that if their apps can capture photos, videos, or audio of children, the amended COPPA may well affect them.

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FTC selects two winners in Robocall Challenge, gives each $25,000

FTC selects two winners in Robocall Challenge, gives each $25,000

Back in October 2012, the FTC decided to make the battle against annoying robocalls public, tasking the hivemind with a challenge to develop technology for dealing with the calls. The incentive was a $50,000 award, in addition to a trip to Washington D.C. where the solution would be presented. Now, nearly six months later, the challenge is over and the winners have been selected.

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Tougher mobile and social ad rules pit FTC against marketers

Tougher mobile and social ad rules pit FTC against marketers

New advertising guidelines aimed at making online and social media ads more transparent have been published by the Federal Trade Commission, toughening the rules on disclosure for product pushers. The amended document, ".com Disclosures" [pdf link], adds smartphone advertising and social media marketing to its original 2000 guidance; in short, the FTC said, if you can't give full disclosure on a device or service like Twitter, then you shouldn't be using it for promotion.

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FTC charges 29 defendants with sending over 180 million spam text messages

FTC charges 29 defendants with sending over 180 million spam text messages

If you've ever received a spam text message offering a free gift card or prize from a popular retailer, it could very well have originated from one of the 29 defendants the FTC has charged with sending over 180 million spam text messages. The text messages alleged that individuals could receive a prize from Best Buy, Walmart, Target, or similar stores for free by providing personal information and applying or subscribing to services.

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