Category Archives: Behavioral Advertising

Smart Television Manufacturer Settles by Paying $ 2.2 Million to the FTC and the State of New Jersey

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The FTC and the State of New Jersey recently announced a settlement with Vizio, Inc., in the amount of $2.2 million for tracking consumer behavior using its smart television devices. The complaint alleged that Vizio acted unfairly by collecting, storing (indefinitely) and sharing consumer data with third parties without consent and in an unexpected manner. Further, the complaint alleged that Vizio had misrepresented the functionality of the feature in their smart televisions that collected such data (also known as “Smart Interactivity”). It was also alleged that these practices were an unconscionable [...] Read more

A+B Privacy Team Provides Analysis of California AG Privacy Report: New Best Practices Guidance Applies to all Businesses Collecting Personal Information from California Residents

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In follow up to our previous blog, California AG Kamala Harris Issues Privacy Policy Guidance: Making Your Privacy Practices Public Contains Draft Tips for Website and Online Service Privacy Policies, regarding the release of the AG’s report, please see our recently released client advisory providing a detailed analysis of the new privacy guidance: California Attorney General Kamala Harris Releases Long-Anticipated Guidance Regarding Privacy Policy Notices . As conceived, the Report is designed to apply to all businesses, regardless of the country or state in which they operate, based on the [...] Read more

California AG Kamala Harris Issues Privacy Policy Guidance: Making Your Privacy Practices Public Contains Draft Tips for Website and Online Service Privacy Policies

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Today, California Attorney General Kamala Harris released her long-anticipated guidance on privacy policies for companies collecting information from California residents in a report entitled Making Your Privacy Practices Public (the “Report”). While the Report exceeds existing law in many respects, affected companies should take heed to review the report and be familiar with its contents as it sets forth a blue print for how the CA AG’s office views “best practices” in connection with privacy policy drafting in the areas of “Big Data,” behavioral tracking, data security, and the [...] Read more

Privacy Partners Paul Martino and Dominique Shelton Author Law360 Article on Proposed California Guidance for Do-Not-Track Disclosures

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Today, Paul Martino and Dominique Shelton, partners in Alston and Bird’s Privacy and Security practice and respective members of the firm’s Legislative & Public Policy and Litigation and Trial Practice groups, co-authored the Law360 article, “Inside Calif.’s Proposed Guidance For Do-Not-Track Law.” In the article, Martino and Shelton address the potential impact of the meeting held for interested stakeholders on December 10, 2013, by the Privacy Enforcement and Protection Unit of the California Office of the Attorney General (“CA AG”) to discuss the AG’s proposed guidance [...] Read more

California Attorney General Announces Upcoming Best Practices Guidelines for Do-Not-Track Disclosures; Guidelines Will Not Delay New A.B. 370 Do-Not-Track Disclosure Requirements from Taking Effect on January 1, 2014

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On December 10, 2013, the Privacy Enforcement and Protection Unit of the California Office of the Attorney General (CA AG) held a meeting in San Francisco for interested stakeholders to discuss best practices in light of the Assembly’s enactment of A.B. 370, California’s new do-not-track disclosure law that goes into effect on January 1, 2014. A.B. 370 amended the California Online Privacy Protection Act (CalOPPA) to require operators of websites, online services and mobile applications to amend their privacy policies as of the new year to either (1) disclose how they respond to do-not-track [...] Read more

FTC Announces 2014 Spring Seminars Disclosing Future Regulatory Focus

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Yesterday, the Federal Trade Commission announced three main topics that will be the focus of its Spring 2014 privacy seminars. The areas to be examined are: (1) Mobile Device Tracking; (2) Alternative Scoring Products; and (3) Consumer Generated and Controlled Health Data.  The Mobile Device Tracking seminar, which is open to the public, will take place on February 19, 2014 from 10:00 to 12:00 at FTC Conference Center, 601 New Jersey Ave., NW, Washington, DC. As the FTC defines it, mobile device tracking is the tracking of consumers in retail and other businesses using signals from the consumers’ [...] Read more

California Privacy Ballot Initiative Moves Forward: Act Would Amend California Constitution to Set Standards for Collection and Protection of Personally Identifying Information, including Financial and/or Health Information

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California Secretary of State Debra Bowen has allowed signature collection to commence for a ballot initiative, named the Personal Privacy Protection Act, that could drastically alter the California privacy regime. The initiative, led by former state Senator Steve Peace and retired attorney Michael Thorsnes, seeks to amend the California Constitution to define personally identifiable information as “any information which can be used to distinguish or trace a natural person’s identity which is linked or linkable to a specific natural person” but excludes information that is publicly [...] Read more

California District Court Allows ECPA Claims to Proceed

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The United States District Court for the Northern District of California has denied Google’s motion to dismiss the ECPA claims asserted against it in In re Google Inc. Gmail Litigation, No. 13-MD-02430 2013 WL 5423918 (N.D. Cal. Sept. 26, 2013).  This decision provides a road map to plaintiffs’ lawyers and has already resulted in the filing of follow-on, copycat lawsuits. The In re Google Plaintiffs allege that “since 2008, Google has intercepted, read, and acquired the content of emails that were sent or received by Gmail users while the emails were in transit.” Plaintiffs claim that [...] Read more

Update: California Governor Brown Signs into Law A.B. 370, “Do Not Track Disclosure Law”

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On September 27, 2013, California Governor Brown signed into law A.B. 370, amending the California Online Protection Act (CalOPPA) to require two new privacy policy disclosures for websites and online services regarding behavioral tracking. California Assembly member Al Muratsuchi (D-Torrance), who introduced A.B. 370, released a statement in which he said the amended law “will protect Californians’ right to privacy by providing transparency that will allow consumers to know when their online activity is being tracked. The consumer can then make an informed decision about their [...] Read more

Privacy Co-Chair Paul Martino Quoted on Nationwide Impact of New California Law Establishing Online Privacy Rights for Children Under 18 Years of Age

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On September 26, 2013, Paul Martino, co-chair of Alston and Bird’s Privacy and Security practice, was quoted in the Law360 article, “California’s Delete-Button Law Invigorates Teen Privacy Push.” In the article, Martino discussed the likely nationwide impact of a newly enacted California law, entitled “Privacy Rights for California Minors in the Digital Age,” which passed the California legislature as S.B. 568 on August 30 and was signed by Governor Brown on September 23. “What we’re seeing from California is a move to nudge the federal law and perhaps influence other states to [...] Read more