On August 25, 2014, the Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) issued a Federal Register notice to be published, announcing the FTC’s request for public comment on a proposed verifiable parental consent method. The method has been submitted for approval by AgeCheq, Inc. under the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act and the rules promulgated thereunder (the “Rule”).
The Rule requires operators of commercial websites and online services, including mobile apps, to post privacy policies, provide notice thereof, and obtain verifiable parental consent prior to collecting, using, or disclosing personal information from children under the age of 13. It also specifies acceptable methods for obtaining verifiable parental consent, and allows a party to file a written request for approval by the FTC of other methods. Pursuant to Section 312.12(a) of the Rule, AgeCheq has submitted its service as a proposed parental consent method to the FTC.
The FTC is seeking comments from the public on: (1) whether the proposed method is already covered by the methods enumerated in the Rule as acceptable, both with respect to both an initial website operator and subsequent website operators, (2) whether the proposed method meets the requirement that a method be reasonably calculated, in light of available technology, to ensure that the person providing consent is the child’s parent, and (3) whether the proposed method poses a risk to consumers’ personal information, and if so, whether such a risk is outweighed by the benefits provided to consumers and businesses. The deadline for comments is September 30, 2014.