Epic Games to pay $520 million over children's privacy and trickery charges2022-12-19 18:57 by Daniela
Tags: Fortnite, Epic Games, FTC
"Fortnite" creator Epic Games will pay $520 million to settle allegations that it illegally collected children's personal information and tricked people into making purchases, the Federal Trade Commission and the company said on Monday.
It will pay a record penalty of $275 million for violating a children's privacy law and adopt strong default privacy settings for young people. Epic Games will also pay $245 million to refund consumers duped by so-called "dark patterns" into making purchases they did not intend to make, the FTC said.
"Epic used privacy-invasive default settings and deceptive interfaces that tricked Fortnite users, including teenagers and children," FTC chairwoman Lina M. Khan said in a statement released Monday. "Protecting the public, and especially children, from online privacy invasions and dark patterns is a top priority for the commission, and these enforcement actions make clear to businesses that the FTC is cracking down on these unlawful practices."
Epic's agreement with the FTC, which is not yet final, prohibits the company from using dark patterns or charging consumers without their consent, and also forbids Epic from locking players out of their accounts in response to users' chargeback requests with credit card companies disputing unwanted charges. The agreement will last for 20 years from the time it is adopted.
In a blog post addressing the twin settlements, Epic said the agreement reflects an evolution in how US laws are applied to the video gaming industry.
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