Xbox Fined $20M By FTC After Illegal Collection Of Children’s Data

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$20 Million Fine For Xbox!

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC), responsible for protecting consumer data in the United States, has fined Xbox a hefty $20 million charge for illegally storing children’s personal information on its platform without parents’ consent.

According to the Children’s Online Privacy Protection(COPPA) rule, websites and services require parental consent prior to the collection of personal information from kids. However, Xbox failed to follow this rule.

Why It Matters: With the rise of modern technologies, data protection is a concerning matter. The fact that such a sizable company has been storing the personal data of children without parental consent is also very concerning.

Xbox Series X|S Japan

The data included biometric information, phone numbers, and avatars generated from children’s images. According to the FTC, Microsoft retained this data for years, even if the signup process was incomplete, which is a violation of COPPA.

As a result, Microsoft will now be mandated to implement several measures to enhance privacy protection for children. Additionally, the COPPA order will now be extended to third-party gaming publishers.

Samuel Levine from the FTC commented:

“Our proposed Order limits what information Microsoft can collect and retain about kids”

Microsoft has now responded to the ruling by FTC on their official site, claiming that the violation of COPPA was a glitch and that the company will improve moving forward. Dave McCarthy, CVP of Xbox Player Services, stated that the company has addressed the glitch, and the data was never shared or used.

Similarly, Epic Games, the creators of Fortnite, were also fined $550 Million last year for violating the COPPA rule, among other charges by the FTC.

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