Kelley Drye

Crystal Skelton is an associate in the Los Angeles office of Kelley Drye & Warren LLP.

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California Last State to Join Multistate Settlement of Western Union Fraud Schemes

Last week, California became the 50th state to join the multistate settlement with Western Union over its alleged complicity in fraud-induced wire transfers.  This followed Western Union’s $5 million agreement with 49 state and the District of Columbia for costs and fees in January, not to mention a whopping $586 million in settlement agreements with the … Continue Reading

Federal Court Finds Amazon Liable for Kids’ In-App Purchases

Yesterday, a federal judge ruled that Amazon is liable for permitting unauthorized in-app purchases incurred by children.  Amazon is the last in a series of actions brought by the FTC against third-party platforms related to kids’ in-app charges (we previously blogged about the other two actions against Apple and Google here and here, which resulted in … Continue Reading

Scalia’s Death Leaves High Court in Limbo on Three Key Consumer Class Actions

While the sudden death of Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia creates an immediate vacancy on the bench, it also likely leaves the high court’s docket in limbo on a number of key consumer class actions awaiting the Court’s decision. Many predict that President Obama will not be able to replace Scalia before the 2016 Presidential … Continue Reading

App Developers Settle COPPA Violations Relating to Third-Party Ad Network Practices

This week, the FTC announced settlements with two mobile app developers – LAI Systems, LLC and Retro Dreamer (including two of its principals) – concerning allegations that their apps collected childrens’ personal information without obtaining parental consent in violation of COPPA.  These cases are the first in which the FTC has held a company liable … Continue Reading

Cookies, Promises, and California: Why the 3rd Circuit Revived Privacy Claims Against Google

Last week, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit revived several privacy claims against Google pertaining to the Internet company’s practice of side-stepping “cookie blockers” on Microsoft’s Internet Explorer and Apple’s Safari browsers. The Third Circuit found that Google intentionally circumvented “cookie blockers” on Internet browsers by exploiting loopholes found in the cookie … Continue Reading

Will the FTC Have Access to Your Electronic Communications?

Amending the Electronic Communications Privacy Act (ECPA) has long been under consideration in Congress, but recent testimony indicates that ECPA reform may have deeper implications for companies subject to FTC investigations. The ECPA, passed almost 30 years ago, generally prohibits the unauthorized access to communications systems and the disclosure of the contents of wire and … Continue Reading

“Green” Certifications and Seals Do Not Have FTC Approval

On September 14, FTC staff sent warning letters to five providers of environmental certification seals and 32 businesses that display them online, alerting them to the agency’s concerns that the seals may be deceptive and may not comply with the FTC’s Green Guides.  Although the warning letters do not identify which certifiers, seals, or businesses … Continue Reading

California Bill Would Complicate Labeling Requirements for Children’s Products

California state law bill SB 763 has stayed relatively under the radar since its introduction in February 2015.  However, with recent traction in the state legislature – including passage in the Senate in June and passage in three Assembly Committees in July – this bill is definitely worth a second look. SB 763 would require manufacturers … Continue Reading

Wet Wipes Manufacturer Must Back Up Its Flushing Claims (And Not Consumers’ Plumbing)

On May 18, 2015, the FTC announced a settlement with Nice-Pak Products, Inc., concerning claims that its moist wipes are “flushable,” “break apart after being flushed,” and are “safe” for sewer and septic systems. Nice-Pak marketed and sold its flushable wipes primarily through private label brands, such as Costco’s Kirkland Signature Moist Flushable Wipes, CVS’s … Continue Reading

Google to Refund at Least $19 Million Over Kids’ In-App Purchases

On September 4, 2014, the FTC announced a settlement with Google Inc., which requires the search giant to pay at least $19 million in refunds to consumers that the Commission alleges were billed for unauthorized in-app charges incurred by kids.  The settlement follows a similar settlement in January with Apple (which required Apple to pay … Continue Reading

Third Plastic Lumber Company Hammered by FTC Over “Green” Claims

Last week, the FTC announced it had reached another settlement with a plastic lumber company regarding its green marketing claims.  This is the FTC’s third settlement in five months relating to environmental claims for plastic lumber products (the other cases involved N.E.W. Plastics Corp. and American Plastic Lumber, Inc.). The FTC’s complaint alleges that Engineered … Continue Reading

FTC Updates COPPA FAQs on Parental Consent Mechanisms

This week, the Federal Trade Commission announced the latest revisions to its Frequently Asked Questions (“FAQs”) document to assist online operators as they work to comply with changes to the Children’s Online Privacy Protection (“COPPA”) Rule that went into effect on July 1, 2013. The updated FAQs provide the following expanded guidance on verifiable parental … Continue Reading

FTC Files Suit Against Amazon Over Kids’ In-App Purchases

On July 10, 2014, the FTC filed a complaint in federal court alleging that Amazon unlawfully billed parents and other Amazon account holders for unauthorized in-app charges incurred by kids.  The complaint follows a similar FTC settlement with Apple and a similar class action lawsuit against Google.  The FTC’s complaint alleges that Amazon offers free … Continue Reading

California Releases Guidance on DNT Disclosures for Privacy Policies

Yesterday, the California Attorney General Kamala Harris released much-anticipated guidance providing website and mobile app operators recommended best practices when disclosing how the operator responds to Do Not Track (“DNT”) signals in its online privacy policy.   The guidance, “Making Your Privacy Practices Public,” is intended to help companies comply with recent revisions to the California … Continue Reading

Snapchat Captured in FTC Enforcement

On May 8, 2014, the FTC announced a settlement with Snapchat resolving allegations that the popular mobile messaging app deceived consumers over the disappearing nature of users “snaps” and made false and misleading representations concerning its privacy and information security practices.  The FTC took issue with several of Snapchat’s practices and representations: Disappearing “Snaps” – Snapchat … Continue Reading

Lawsuit Filed Against Google Over Kids’ In-App Purchases

A class action lawsuit was filed last week in California against Google Inc., alleging that many apps in Google’s app marketplace permit children to make virtual purchases within the game without a parents’ knowledge or consent. The complaint alleges that Google offers free and paid apps through its “Google Play” store, and that many are … Continue Reading

Kelley Drye to Host Discussion With Key Leaders on Advertising and Marketing Products for Children

On March 13, 2014, the DC office of Kelley Drye will host a policy discussion on the special considerations in legislative, regulatory, and enforcement initiatives designed to protect children. The discussion will focus on the established and emerging issues in product safety and advertising and marketing products for children. Kelley Drye is delighted to have … Continue Reading

Plastic Lumber Company Nailed Over “Green” Claims

The FTC announced last week that it had reached a settlement with N.E.W. Plastics Corp., d/b/a Renew Plastics, over allegedly improper recyclability and recycled content claims.  The company manufactures plastic lumber products – including its Evolve and Trimax brands – used primarily in outdoor decking and furniture.  According to the FTC’s complaint, the company claimed … Continue Reading
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