Retail & Consumer Products Law Observer

Retail & Consumer Products Law Observer

Legal Insight for the Retail and Consumer Products Industry

Category Archives: Privacy & Data Protection

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Report on the Autonomous Vehicle Safety Regulation World Congress 2017

Posted in Privacy & Data Protection, Product Liability & Torts
The big takeaways from The Autonomous Vehicle Safety Regulation World Congress centered on the importance of a federal scheme for AV regulation and the reality of the states’ interest in traditional issues such as traffic enforcement, product liability, and insurance coverage. In keeping with those messages, the World Congress kicked off with NHTSA Deputy Administrator… Continue Reading

Failure to Obtain Viewer Consent Leads to $2.2 Million Settlement for Vizio

Posted in Advertising & Product Risk Management, Privacy & Data Protection
Vizio Reaches $2.2 Million Settlement With FTC, New Jersey, For Failing to Obtain Viewer Consent to Track and Sell Viewing Habits to Third Parties Traditionally, advertisers purchase ad inventory during television programs based on basic demographic information regarding viewer attributes. Thus, while ads may reach viewers of a particular gender and age range, those ads… Continue Reading

Keeping It “Real”: Supreme Court Holds That Consumers Must Allege Real Harm

Posted in Advertising & Product Risk Management, Consumer Class Action, Privacy & Data Protection
In Spokeo, Inc. v. Robins, the U.S. Supreme Court has issued yet another narrow decision—apparently designed to avoid a 4-4 deadlock—in another hard-fought, potentially divisive case on its docket this term. On May 16, 2016, the Court held 6-2 that the Ninth Circuit had erred in not asking whether plaintiff Robins had alleged that he… Continue Reading

Join C&M and other legal experts for the FBA’s Fashion Law Conference

Posted in Advertising & Product Risk Management, Antitrust & Claims Recovery, Consumer Class Action, International Trade, IP/Brand Protection, Privacy & Data Protection
On February 12, 2016, the Federal Bar Association will host a day-long Fashion Law Conference at Parsons School of Design (Starr Foundation Hall in the New School’s stunning new University Center) on the last day of New York Fashion Week! Speakers include in-house counsel from The Estee Lauder Companies, Inc., Tiffany & Co., New York &… Continue Reading

Hello Barbie (and Lawsuit)

Posted in Advertising & Product Risk Management, Consumer Class Action, Privacy & Data Protection, Torts
Just in time for the holiday shopping rush, “Hello Barbie” has hit the shelves.  This Barbie actually talks back to its playmates and is the latest high-tech version of the iconic doll. The secret to this innovation? The Internet. Toymaker Mattel partnered with software firm ToyTalk to equip the doll with a microphone, voice-recognition, and… Continue Reading

FTC Data Security Authority Confirmed

Posted in Advertising & Product Risk Management, Privacy & Data Protection
The Third Circuit’s Monday decision in FTC v. Wyndham Worldwide confirmed the Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC) statutory authority to pursue enforcement actions for allegedly “unfair” data security practices under Section 5 of the FTC Act. Many believe that the decision will embolden the FTC to continue aggressively regulating what it considers to be unreasonable data security… Continue Reading

Recent FTC Safe Harbor Enforcement Takeaways

Posted in Advertising & Product Risk Management, Privacy & Data Protection
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has struck again in the data privacy world, this time at 13 companies that allegedly misrepresented in their privacy statements that they were U.S.-EU or U.S.-Swiss Safe Harbor certified. This latest enforcement sweep demonstrates the FTC’s privacy focus and reinforces the need for companies to make accurate public representations. The… Continue Reading

When Your Toys Talk Back: Children’s Privacy and Safety in an Age of Wired Toys

Posted in Advertising & Product Risk Management, Privacy & Data Protection
First, it was the “Internet of Things” and now it is the “Internet of Dolls.” Mattel, maker of the iconic Barbie doll, has announced plans to introduce “Hello Barbie,” a doll with a Siri-like ability to communicate. The new Barbie, which connects to the cloud through WiFi, can have conversations, tell jokes, and play games… Continue Reading

Resolution 101 – The Senate’s Position on the Internet of Things

Posted in Privacy & Data Protection
Last week, the Senate broke Congressional silence by passing Resolution 101 – enunciating the chamber’s position on how the country should approach the burgeoning technology of the “Internet of Things,” or what’s more commonly known as the “IoT.” Amidst a series of recent hearings in both the House and the Senate, the IoT industry and… Continue Reading

To Connect with Consumers on the Internet of Things, Build Security Into Products from the Start

Posted in Advertising & Product Risk Management, Privacy & Data Protection
To tackle the challenges of launching products on the Internet of Things, the FTC recommends designing security into interconnected products from the outset as well as monitoring products post sale to quickly identify security risks. Most consumer product companies already have similar programs in place to ensure the safety of the products and meet CPSC… Continue Reading

Highlights from the National Law Journal Regulatory Summit 2014

Posted in Advertising & Product Risk Management, Privacy & Data Protection
At this year’s National Law Journal (NLJ) Regulatory Summit in Washington, DC, held on December 1, 2014, speakers focused on the current and future of the federal regulatory landscape in the United States.  Highlights included: Former Congressional Leaders Speak on Future Trends in Health Care and Other Sectors The featured speakers included former U.S. Senate… Continue Reading

California Enacts Tough New Privacy Protections

Posted in Privacy & Data Protection
On September 30, 2014, California Governor Jerry Brown signed into law Assembly Bill 1710, which contains a new set of personal information protections that affect all businesses that “own, license, or maintain personal information about Californians.” In what may become a precedent for other jurisdictions, the law includes the nation’s first mandatory state requirement for… Continue Reading

What Do Actress Lindsay Lohan and Former Panamanian Strongman Manuel Noriega Have in Common?

Posted in IP/Brand Protection, Privacy & Data Protection
Both have recently brought legal actions against video game makers alleging that their rights of privacy or publicity have been violated by characters in video games. The lawsuits are the latest in a series of high profile disputes that pit an individual’s personality rights against a game maker’s First Amendment rights. Various states have enacted… Continue Reading

California Legislature Seeks to Restrict Data Use and Ramp Up Retailer Liability for Data Breaches

Posted in Advertising & Product Risk Management, Consumer Class Action, Privacy & Data Protection
A bill has been introduced in the California legislature that would dramatically increase retailers’ liability for data breaches. Dubbed the “Consumer Data Breach Protection Act,” Assembly Bill 1710 would enact sweeping changes to California’s data breach notification laws, setting short deadlines by which consumers would need to be notified of breaches and increasing the penalties… Continue Reading

Telemarketers Beware: New TCPA Regulations Effective October 16, 2013

Posted in Consumer Class Action, Privacy & Data Protection
The deadline for complying with new Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) regulations is on Wednesday, October 16, 2013. The new rules, promulgated by the FCC in 2012, govern the circumstances under which telemarketers can contact consumers. Non-compliance puts both telemarketers and those companies that they act “on behalf of” at potential risk. As of October… Continue Reading

Online Privacy Is Getting Interestinger and Interestinger!

Posted in Privacy & Data Protection
In case you haven’t heard, online privacy is getting very complicated and Internet users are worried.  It’s no wonder given all the activity in the industry, with daily stories on stolen identities and data breaches, companies you’ve never even heard of collecting information about you and even mobile game applications knowing about your physical whereabouts.… Continue Reading

Data Breach Class Action Against Barnes & Noble Dismissed for Lack of Standing

Posted in Consumer Class Action, Privacy & Data Protection
On September 3, 2013, the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois dismissed a class action complaint against Barnes & Noble seeking damages based on a data security incident, finding that the plaintiffs lacked standing to bring the claims. This decision reaffirms that retailers may be able to avoid damages for data breaches… Continue Reading

Allegation of Data Breach Alone Insufficient to Sustain Claims Based on Inadequate Cybersecurity Under California Law

Posted in Consumer Class Action, Privacy & Data Protection
On March 6, 2013, the United States District Court for the Northern District of California held that a putative class of LinkedIn premium users lacked standing to pursue state law unfair competition, breach of contract, and negligence claims resulting from a hacking incident. The court dismissed the complaint, concluding that the plaintiffs failed to establish… Continue Reading

White House Issues Consumer Data Privacy Framework

Posted in Privacy & Data Protection
Late last month, the White House issued its consumer data privacy framework entitled, “Consumer Data Privacy in a Networked World: A Framework for Protecting Privacy and Promoting Innovation in the Global Digital Economy.” The Administration’s privacy framework was announced as an attempt to provide a clear set of basic privacy principles to address consumer data… Continue Reading

Federal Court Rules Printing Only a Credit Card’s Expiration Month on a Receipt Violates Federal Law

Posted in Consumer Class Action, Privacy & Data Protection
On January 24, 2012, the United States Court of Appeal for the Third Circuit ruled that printing just the month of a credit card’s expiration date on a customer receipt violates the federal Fair And Accurate Credit Transactions Act (FACTA). This is the first federal appeals court to address this issue and confirms that retailers… Continue Reading

California Supreme Court Holds that Collecting and Recording Zip Codes During Credit Card Transactions Violates California Law

Posted in Consumer Class Action, Privacy & Data Protection
In a decision sure to affect the way retailers do business in California, the California Supreme Court has held that asking for and recording a customer’s zip code during a credit card transaction violates California law. Specifically, in Pineda v. Williams-Sonoma Stores, Inc. (Case No. S178241), the Court held that requesting such information violates the… Continue Reading