Archives: Regulatory – United States

Subscribe to Regulatory – United States RSS Feed

FTC Extension of Robocalling Rules Is Approved By Federal Court

Last week, a D.C. District Court declined to find the Federal Trade Commission’s decision to extend robocalling restrictions to telemarketing calls that use “soundboard” technology unconstitutional or in violation of any procedural rules. The Soundboard Association, a telecommunications interest group, argued that the FTC rule was unconstitutional because the FTC bypassed the notice-and-comment requirements typically … Continue Reading

Federal Court Enters FTC Settlement in Fake Prize Mail Scheme

Recently, a California federal court has entered into a stipulated order reflecting a settlement between the Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) and a defendant charged with operating a mail fraud scheme. In September 2016, the FTC filed charges against Defendant Ian Gamberg and two other individuals, alleging that the group conspired to print and mail false … Continue Reading

Influencers and Advertisers Warned By FTC Over Instagram Posts

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) announced this week that it sent more than 90 letters to social media influencers and advertisers, reiterating the need for influencers to “clearly and conspicuously” disclose their relationships with brands in social media posts that promote or endorse branded products. The FTC reviewed the Instagram posts of various unnamed celebrities, … Continue Reading

Diet-Pill Marketers Settle With FTC Over Email Marketing and Weight Loss Claims

Colby Fox and his companies Tachht, Inc. and Teqqi, LLC recently settled a case with the Federal Trade Commission over an email marketing scheme and claims regarding the companies’ diet pills. According to the FTC, which filed the proposed order in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida, Tampa Division, the defendants … Continue Reading

Upromise Penalized for Violating FTC Privacy Order Over Rewards Program

Upromise found itself in front of the Federal Trade Commission answering very tough questions earlier this month. The inquiry was related to a 2012 order requiring that Upromise include disclosures about data collection practices and conduct third-party assessments about Upromise’s data security safeguards. The FTC alleged that Upromise failed to comply with the terms of … Continue Reading

FTC Identifies Top Categories of Consumer Complaints for 2016

On Friday, March 3, 2017, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) released its annual summary of consumer complaints—a compendium of complaints lodged over the course of 2016. These complaints are collected through the Consumer Sentinel Network (CSN), which is a database of millions of consumer complaints available to law enforcement agencies. Of the over three million … Continue Reading

Contractual Audit Rights: How to Overcome Real-Life Challenges Webinar

Douglas Wood, Partner at Reed Smith LLP, will be presenting a webinar on Contractual Audit Rights: How to Overcome Real-Life Challenges. Clear Law Institute will host the webinar, which you can attend live on February 27 at 1 p.m. ET or view a recording anytime after the event.     You can receive a 35% discount off … Continue Reading

Avoid the Perfect Storm

Washington has been hit with a political Tsunami unlike anything we’ve seen in our lifetimes.  But you know that.  What you may not know is how this tidal wave is going to change your day-to-day operations in advising marketers and their supply chain.  You may not know what to expect and how to respond.  Need … Continue Reading

FTC Settlement Applies “Made in the USA” standard to “Built in the USA” Claims

Continuing its focus on “Made in the USA” claims, the Federal Trade Commission (“FTC” or “Commission”), on February 1, applied its standard for those claims to “Built in the USA” claims by entering into a settlement with water filtration company, iSpring Water Systems, LLC (“iSpring”). In a move that appeared contrary to previously released guidance, … Continue Reading

FTC Will Consider Spying Toy Privacy Concerns

Last month, the Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”), in response to a complaint filed by Electronic Privacy Information Center (“EPIC”) and other consumer groups, made the decision to review the potential privacy and security concerns associated with electronic, internet-capable children’s toys, namely My Friend Kayla and i-Que Robot, designed by Genesis Toys and Nuance Communications. EPIC … Continue Reading

Cause of Action Joins Defense of Electronics Maker in FTC Privacy Suit

The advocacy group Cause of Action has stepped in to help defend electronics maker D-Link in a suit brought by the Federal Trade Commission over the company’s purportedly insufficient protection of customers’ privacy. The FTC is targeting D-Link for making representations that its products, including wireless routers and Internet protocol cameras, feature strong security, even … Continue Reading

Herbalife Settles Multi-level Marketing Scheme for $200 Million

Almost 350,000 people who helped run Herbalife businesses are receiving checks from the Federal Trade Commission to compensate them for money lost due to the company’s deceptive earnings claims. Specifically, Herbalife was claiming that participants could expect to quit their jobs, earn thousands of dollars a month, and make a career-level income or get rich. … Continue Reading

States Act to Regulate Fantasy Sports

In attempts to lessen the uncertainty that still surrounds the legality of fantasy sports, Maryland and Florida introduced measures to clarify the rules of the road for the likes of DraftKings Inc. and FanDuel Inc. Maryland’s regulations, adopted by the state Office of the Comptroller, went into effect January 2, while Florida’s House of Representatives … Continue Reading

Seventh Circuit Upholds Indiana Ban on Robocalls

Last week, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit upheld an Indiana statute banning robocalls, concluding that the statute was evenly applied in an effort to prohibit unsolicited calls made without a recipient’s consent regardless of the content of the message or the identity of the caller. Patriotic Veterans, Inc. brought suit arguing … Continue Reading

New Jersey Prohibits Company from Contractually Banning Online Customer Reviews

This week, NJ Attorney General Christopher Porrino and the Division of Consumer Affairs settled with Fertility Bridges, Inc., a fertility clinic operating in California and Illinois, over the clinic’s practice of contractually barring consumers from posting online reviews of their experiences with the clinic and its personnel. The provisions, set forth in the Terms of … Continue Reading

FTC Settles Data Breach Case with AshleyMadison for $1.6 Million

The Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) settled with online dating website AshleyMadison.com for $1.6 million stemming from FTC and state actions brought against the company as a result of a July 2015 data breach that exposed the profile and account information of approximately 36 million users. In addition to the settlement, AshleyMadison.com must also implement a … Continue Reading

FTC Settles with Vemma Nutrition for $238 Million Arising from Pyramid Scheme

Last month, the Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) settled with Vemma Nutrition Company for allegedly engaging in deceptive business practices and sales tactics akin to a pyramid scheme. According to the FTC, the company made deceptive income claims to its distributors and unsubstantiated health claims about its products, specifically representing that consumer demand for the products … Continue Reading

Telemarketer Penalized for Deceptive Tech Support Marketing

The Federal Trade Commission recently settled with Florida-based company Inbound Call Experts on December 22 for deceiving thousands of consumers with its telemarketing scheme. Under the final order, the company must pay a penalty of $10 million to settle the FTC’s charges that it used software designed to make consumers think their computers had viruses … Continue Reading

USDA Releases Recommendations for Food Date Labeling

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (“USDA”) issued new recommendations earlier this month as part of its efforts to clarify food labeling to improve consumer understanding and to reduce food waste. Specifically, the recommendations suggest that companies refrain from using date labeling terms, such as “sell by,” “use by,” or “best if used by,” or others … Continue Reading

New Laws Criminalize Online Ticket Bots and Protect Consumers’ Right to Review

Earlier this month, President Obama approved two pieces of consumer protection legislation aimed at curbing the use of automatic programs to purchase tickets through online sellers and limiting the ability of companies to use contacts to prevent customers from posting online product reviews. Both bills passed through Congress with bipartisan support, as we reported in … Continue Reading

Congress Introduces First Post-Obama Copyright Review Policy Proposal

Last week, members of the U.S. House of Representatives Judiciary Committee introduced their first of many upcoming policy proposals aimed at modernizing U.S. copyright law, and, specifically, the U.S. Copyright Office. This proposal sets out specific changes for the Copyright Office, including creating an advisory committee, introducing an information technology modernization plan, increasing the Office’s … Continue Reading

FTC Unanimously Approves Settlement with Pet Food Manufacturer Over Alleged False Advertising

The Federal Trade Commission has approved a final Decision and Order settling a dispute with pet food producer Mars Petcare US, Inc. (“Mars”) related to advertisements for Mars’ Eukanuba brand dog food. The settlement arose from an FTC investigation into a number of television, print, and internet advertisements released by Mars in 2015 stating that, … Continue Reading

Natural Consequences: FTC Finds California Company Misrepresented Product Ingredients as “All Natural”

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) recently granted summary decision against California Natural Inc., a seller and marketer of personal care products, holding that the company engaged in false and misleading advertising in claiming that its sunscreen SPF 30 product was “all natural.” Last April, the FTC issued an administrative complaint against California Natural, alleging that … Continue Reading

Looking for a Mind at Work: The FTC Presents a Staff Summary of its September 2016 Workshop on Disclosure Effectiveness

Quietly, the Federal Trade Commission staff published a summary of the workshop it convened on September 15, 2016 (“Putting Disclosures to the Test”).  The summary goes into detail and generally presents an accurate and objective recounting of the full-day workshop. Understanding how the Commission thinks about disclosures is critical because the FTC’s Enforcement Policy on … Continue Reading
LexBlog