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Privacy, Identity & Online Security

YouTube pays big for tracking kids

Does your child love YouTube videos? Did you know that while little Susie was watching her favorite shows, YouTube was collecting data and using it to send her targeted ads? Under a settlement with the FTC, YouTube and its parent company, Google, must pay a record $170 million for violating the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) Rule.

Where is your online search leading you?

Dishonest companies set up websites that look like legitimate places to get information on finding a job, joining the military, or getting government benefits. But they might not help you with any of those things. Instead, they’ll take your personal information and sell it to other companies. The companies that buy those “leads” then try to pitch you products or services you didn’t ask for.

The latest news on romance scams

If you’ve seen the news, ‘romance scammers’ are among the eighty defendants indicted today by the Department of Justice in a scheme that stole millions from Americans.

Summer Film Series: Unwanted calls to your mobile phone

Ring, ring! The film series is back, this time with help to stop unwanted calls to your mobile phone.

Unwanted calls are annoying. They interrupt your day, and many are meant to scam you. But what can you do about these calls? Today’s video gives you some ways to stop unwanted calls on your mobile phone, so take a look.

Back to school: Online safety

Now that summertime is quickly coming to an end, it’s back-to-school season. While you’re running around getting pencils, calculators and binders, remember something else on your back-to-school list: talking with your kids about online safety.

Is the American Community Survey legit?

Here at the FTC, we always tell people to use caution when someone they don’t know asks them for personal information. So it’s not surprising that people are asking questions about mailings and phone calls they’re getting about the American Community Survey (ACS).

Equifax data breach: Pick free credit monitoring

Just last week, the FTC and others reached a settlement with Equifax about its September 2017 data breach that exposed personal information of 147 million people. We’ve told you to go to ftc.gov/Equifax, where you can find out if your information was exposed and learn how to file a claim with the company in charge of the claims process.

The Capital One data breach: Time to check your credit report

If you needed yet another nudge to start keeping an eye on your credit report to protect against identity theft, Capital One has delivered it with its announcement that a data breach has exposed the personal information of 106 million of its credit card customers and credit card applicants in the United States and Canada.

Equifax Data Breach: Beware of Fake Settlement Websites

Just last week, we told you to go to ftc.gov/Equifax to find out if your information – like your Social Security number – was exposed in the September 2017 Equifax data breach. At that same website, you can also start a claim for benefits available under the settlement that the FTC and others reached with Equifax.

Wouldn’t you know it? People may have already started putting up fake websites meant to look like the official Equifax settlement claims website.

Who’s reporting robocalls?

Have you ever reported an unwanted call to the FTC, whether it’s a robocall (where you hear a recorded message) or call from a live person? If so, thank you. Reporting, I’m sorry to say, won’t end these annoying calls, but it helps the FTC and other law enforcement agencies investigate and bring cases against scammers and businesses that aren’t following the law. In fact, the FTC’s recent actions against robocallers show what your report can do. While you won’t always know how your report made a difference, you can find out more about calls people like you are reporting to the FTC, across the U.S. or in your community. The FTC’s Do Not Call data is now available in an interactive format

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