FTC Targets Ed Tech Provider for Using Children’s Personal Information for Advertising in Violation of COPPA Rule

  • The FTC obtained an order against education technology provider Edmodo, LLC for allegedly violating the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) Rule by collecting personal data from children without parental consent, using the data for advertising, and outsourcing its COPPA compliance responsibilities to schools.
  • A complaint filed by the DOJ on behalf of the FTC states that Edmodo allegedly provided teachers and schools with an online platform and mobile app for hosting discussions and sharing materials and online resources, but collected personal information about students utilizing these services in order to provide advertisements. The COPPA Rule requires website operators to obtain parental consent to use children’s data for non-educational purposes, which Edmodo did not do. Edmodo also allegedly retained children’s personal information indefinitely in violation of COPPA.
  • The proposed order includes a $6 million civil penalty and other order provisions that will provide protections for children’s data should Edmodo resume operations in the United States.