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July 03, 2020

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Texas State AG Weighs in on Children’s Online Privacy

Texas Attorney General (AG) Ken Paxton announced a settlement with an app developer over concerns that the developer’s apps infringed children’s privacy.

The developer, Juxta Labs, Inc., offers a range of mobile apps and games.  According to the AG’s press release, the company’s apps and social media were easy for children of any age to access.  Some of the apps offered free children’s games that used advertisements and in-app purchases, and transmitted personal information (including internet protocol addresses and geolocation information).  One app in particular – Jott – has apparently become popular among teens because it allows message exchange without resorting to either Wi-Fi or cellular networks (instead, it can operate via a Bluetooth mesh network).

The settlement resolves alleged violations of the Texas Deceptive Trade Practices Act and includes specific commitments to comply with the federal Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA).  The Company agreed to implement age-screening and pay a penalty of $30,000.

Following on the heels of a recent settlement by the New York Attorney General, it is clear that state regulators, as well as the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), are closely reviewing children’s privacy practices.

© 2020 Keller and Heckman LLPNational Law Review, Volume VI, Number 280

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About this Author

Sheila Millar, Keller Heckman, advertising lawyer, privacy attorney
Partner

Sheila A. Millar counsels corporate and association clients on advertising, privacy, product safety, and other public policy and regulatory compliance issues.

Ms. Millar advises clients on an array of advertising and marketing issues.  She represents clients in legislative, rulemaking and self-regulatory actions, advises on claims, and assists in developing and evaluating substantiation for claims. She also has extensive experience in privacy, data security and cybersecurity matters.  She helps clients develop website and app privacy policies,...

202-434-4646
Tracy Marshall, Keller Heckman, regulatory attorney, for-profit company lawyer
Partner

Tracy Marshall assists clients with a range of business and regulatory matters.

In the business and transactional area, Ms. Marshall advises for-profit and non-profit clients on corporate organization, operations, and governance matters, and assists clients with structuring and negotiating a variety of transactions, including purchase and sale, marketing, outsourcing, and e-commerce agreements.

In the privacy, data security, and advertising areas, she helps clients comply with privacy, data security, and consumer protection laws, including laws governing telemarketing and commercial e-mail messages, contests and sweepstakes, endorsements and testimonials, marketing to children, and data breach notification. Ms. Marshall also helps clients establish best practices for collecting, storing, sharing, and disposing of data, and manage outsourcing arrangements and transborder data flows. In addition, she assists with drafting and implementing internal privacy, data security, and breach notification policies, as well as public privacy policies and website terms and conditions.

As to intellectual property matters, Ms. Marshall helps clients protect their copyrights and trademarks through registration, enforcement actions, and licensing agreements.

She also represents clients in proceedings before the Federal Communications Commission and Federal Trade Commission.

Ms. Marshall is a Certified Information Privacy Professional (CIPP/US) through the International Association of Privacy Professionals (IAPP) and a contributing author of Beyond Telecom Law Blog and Consumer Protection Connection.

Education: Washington and Lee University (B.A., 1997); American University, Washington College of Law (J.D., 2002).

Admissions: District of Columbia; Maryland

Memberships: American Bar Association

202-434-4234