WASHINGTON (Legal Newsline) — The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) announced a settlement Dec. 20 with Turn Inc., a Redwood City, California-based company that enables sellers to target digital advertisements to consumers.

 

The settlement resolves allegations that the company deceived consumers by tracking them online and through their mobile applications. According to the FTC, this includes tracking individuals who had taken steps to opt out of such tracking.

 

“Turn tracked millions of consumers online and through mobile apps even if they had taken steps to block or limit tracking,” said Jessica Rich, director of the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection. “The FTC’s order will ensure the company honors consumers’ privacy choices.”

 

The FTC alleged Turn had a privacy policy that indicated how users could opt out of targeted advertisements. Turn allegedly represented to consumers that opting out could be done by using their web browser’s settings to block or limit cookies. The FTC charged, however, that the company used special identifiers to track millions of Verizon consumers even after they had blocked or deleted cookies from websites.

 

As per the settlement agreement, Turn can no longer misrepresent the extent of its online tracking or the ability of users to limit the company’s use of their data.

 

The FTC voted 3-0 to accept the consent agreement.

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