The FTC recently announced approval of the seventh COPPA (Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act) safe harbor program, run by iKeepSafe. COPPA requires website operators to obtain verifiable parental consent before collecting information from children under 13. As we wrote when describing the sixth program approved by the FTC, the FTC Rule implementing the Act creates a “safe harbor” whereby companies participating in an approved program will be deemed compliant with COPPA. iKeepSafe submitted its proposed safe harbor program to the FTC for approval in early 2014. FTC approved the program, stating that iKeepSafe provides “the same or greater protections for children” as those in the COPPA Rule. In its approval, it noted that iKeepSafe has had many years’ experience – along with its partner, Playwell, in children’s privacy and children’s online privacy, including online privacy and safety.
Tip: Safe harbor under COPPA can be a particularly helpful option for companies subject to COPPA, especially given COPPA’s nuances, and confusion that has arisen about how to comply with the trickier provisions of the Act.