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This document represents the views of FTC staff and is not binding on the Commission. PARENTAL ACCESS TO CHILDREN’S PERSONAL INFORMATIONK. The Commission issued an amended Rule on December 19, 2012. The primary goal of COPPA is to place parents in control over what information is collected from their young children online.

To view the Rule and compliance materials, go to the FTC's COPPA page for businesses. GENERAL AUDIENCE, TEEN, AND MIXED-AUDIENCE SITES OR SERVICESH. The Rule was designed to protect children under age 13 while accounting for the dynamic nature of the Internet.

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In general, because many types of nonprofit entities are not subject to Section 5 of the FTC Act, these entities are not subject to the Rule. As a matter of federal policy, all websites and online services operated by the Federal Government and contractors operating on behalf of federal agencies must comply with the standards set forth in COPPA. The amended Rule defines “personal information” to include identifiers, such as a customer number held in a cookie, an IP address, a processor or device serial number, or a unique device identifier that can be used to recognize a user over time and across different websites or online services, even where such identifier is FAQ C.11), your collection, use or disclosure of such persistent identifiers unless (1) you collect no other “personal information,” and (2) such persistent identifiers are collected on or through your site or service solely for the purpose of providing “support for the internal operations” of your site or service. In addition, an operator of a general audience website or online service that has a separate children’s area must post a link to its notice of information practices with regard to children on the home or landing page or screen of the children’s area. In the 1999 Statement of Basis and Purpose, the Commission noted that “operators are free to combine the privacy policies into one document, as long as the link for the children’s policy takes visitors directly to the point in the document where the operator’s policies with respect to children are discussed, or it is clearly disclosed at the top of the notice that there is a specific section discussing the operator’s information practices with regard to children.” 64 Fed. Operators should also ensure that the link for the children’s portion of the privacy policy appears on the home page or screen of the children’s area of the site or service, and at each area where personal information is collected from children. There are four instances where a direct notice is required or appropriate under the Rule: No.

However, nonprofit entities that operate for the profit of their commercial members may be subject to the Rule. OMB Guidance for Implementing the Privacy Provisions of the E-Government Act of 2002 (Sept. Foreign-based websites and online services must comply with COPPA if they are directed to children in the United States, or if they knowingly collect personal information from children in the U. The law’s definition of “operator” includes foreign-based websites and online services that are involved in commerce in the United States or its territories. S.-based sites and services that collect information from foreign children also are subject to COPPA. The amended Rule retains the requirement that, if there are multiple operators collecting information through your site (including via plug-ins), you may list the name, address, phone number, and email address of one operator who will respond to all inquiries from parents regarding all of the operators’ privacy policies and use of children’s information, as long as the names of all the operators are also listed in this online notice. For more detailed information about activities considered support for internal operations, FAQs I.5-8, below. As described in FAQ C.11 above, the amended Rule makes clear that the direct notice to parents must contain certain key information within the four corners of the notice itself, depending on the purpose for which the information is being collected.

However, the Commission’s 1999 Statement of Basis and Purpose notes that the Commission expects that operators will keep confidential 64 Fed. Although COPPA does not apply to teenagers, the FTC is concerned about teen privacy and does believe that strong, more flexible, protections may be appropriate for this age group. The Rule also covers operators that allow children publicly to post personal information. The Rule does not require operators to ask the age of visitors.

FTC Report: Protecting Consumer Privacy in an Era of Rapid Change: Recommendations for Businesses and Policymakers (Mar. The FTC also has issued a number of guidance documents for teens and their parents. Finally, as the FTC made clear in the amended Rule, the passive tracking of children’s personal information through a persistent identifier, and not just its active collection, also is covered by COPPA. However, an operator of a general audience site or service that chooses to screen its users for age in a neutral fashion may rely on the age information its users enter, even if that age information is not accurate.

The following FAQs are intended to supplement the compliance materials available on the FTC website. COPPA required the Federal Trade Commission to issue and enforce regulations concerning children’s online privacy.

In addition, you may send questions or comments to the FTC staff’s COPPA mailbox, Coppa Hot [email protected] The Commission’s original COPPA Rule became effective on April 21, 2000.Information about the FTC’s COPPA enforcement actions, including the amounts of civil penalties obtained, can be found by clicking on the Case Highlights link in the FTC’s Business Center. COPPA gives states and certain federal agencies authority to enforce compliance with respect to entities over which they have jurisdiction. First, until you get your website or online service into compliance, you must stop collecting, disclosing, or using personal information from children under age 13.In the past, Texas and New Jersey have brought COPPA enforcement actions. Second, carefully review your information practices and your online privacy policy.Information about the FTC’s COPPA enforcement actions can be found by clicking on the Case Highlights link in the FTC’s Business Center.Parents, consumer groups, industry members, and others that believe an operator is violating COPPA may submit complaints to the FTC through the FTC’s website, gov, or toll free number, (877) FTC-HELP.A court can hold operators who violate the Rule liable for civil penalties of up to ,484 per violation.

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