YouTube Agrees to Pay $170 Million For Violations of The Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act Rule

Today the FTC and the State of New York formally announced a $170 million settlement over YouTube’s violations of the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act Rule.

The Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act was created in 2000, the law was amended in 2013 as mobile devices and social media became more prevalent and changed the way children consume content. Recently the FTC started looking into making more changes and is currently seeking input about how to address sites that kids use but that aren’t designed specifically for kids. The issue here is that YouTube was collecting information about its viewers and targeting ads to them even for viewers under 13 in violation of the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act.

“In addition to the $170 million judgment – which goes to the U.S. Treasury and the State of New York – the proposed settlement requires YouTube and parent company Google to notify channel owners that their child-directed content may be subject to the COPPA Rule. YouTube and Google also must implement and maintain a system that lets channel owners identify content as child-directed so YouTube can ensure it’s complying with COPPA. In addition, YouTube and Google must provide annual COPPA compliance training for employees who deal with channel owners.” The FTC said in a statement on their website.

In response to this FTC investigation, Google has announced that Creators must tell YoUTube if its content targets kids. YouTube will also no longer track kicks without parent’s consent and kids can’t comment without parent’s consent. For now, we will have to wait and see if Google takes any additional steps to address the concerns about COPPA violations.

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