The Federal Trade Commission has approved revised rules that spell out the types of information that cannot be collected from children without their parents’ permission, an action meant to address privacy concerns in the constantly evolving era of smartphones, tablets, social media, and apps.
The new policies, announced last month, seek to close loopholes that the agency says allow websites and online services to gather information improperly from students and turn it over to third parties.
One significant change clarifies that the types of “personal information” that can’t be culled without parents’ approval include location information, photos, and videos.
The agency, which seeks to protect consumers and curb deceptive and anti-competitive practices, also modified the rules so that they apply to “persistent identifiers,” that can reveal information about users over time and across different websites and services. Those identifiers include IP addresses and mobile device IDs, which can be used by marketers to build profiles of children.
A version of this article appeared in the January 09, 2013 edition of Education Week as Online-Privacy Rules For Children Revised