Vizio fined for snooping on consumers' viewing habits2017-02-07 14:39 by Daniela
TV maker Vizio has been found to be tracking users' viewing habits without them knowing. The company has been secretly collecting viewing data and selling it to third parties. That's why it will have to pay $2.2 million to settle a lawsuit with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC).
The FTC will get $1.5 million and the state will receive $1 million. The state will suspend $300,000 in civil penalties included in its settlement amount if Vizio complies with the agreement.
The main problem was that Vizio TVs had tracking features turned on by default, instead of an opt-in setting like many other manufacturers use. Newer Vizio TVs that run the company's SmartCast system have the tracking turned off by default.
"Consumers didn't know that while they were watching their TVs, Vizio was watching them," the US Federal Trade Commission said. "The generic way the company described that feature – for example, 'enables program offers and suggestions' – didn't give consumers the necessary heads-up to know that Vizio was tracking their TV's every flicker."
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