Microsoft to pay $20 million civil penalty for violations of children’s privacy laws – DOJ

Source: Sputniknews  13.6.2023


The Microsoft Corporation has agreed to pay a $20 million fine to the federal government for knowingly collecting childrens’ personal information without notifying parents, the Justice Department said in a press release Monday.


“The Justice Department, together with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), announced today that the United States has resolved a case against Microsoft Corp. regarding its practices for collecting and retaining personal information from children who use Microsoft’s Xbox Live service,” DOJ officials said.


“In a complaint filed in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington, the United States alleges that Microsoft knew that certain users were children but nonetheless continued to collect personal information, such as telephone numbers, before notifying parents of Microsoft’s information collection practices and before obtaining parental consent,” they added.


The complaint also said Microsoft provided some notice to parents but that was incomplete and failed to comply with COPPA Rule requirements.


A court order obligates Microsoft to pay $20 million in civil penalties and imposes injunctive relief to settle allegations that the company violated the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) and the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Rule (COPPA Rule) when they used Xbox games.


The complaint noted that in certain circumstances, children began but did not complete Xbox Live accounts, but Microsoft retained their personal information for longer than allowed by the COPPA Rule.


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