FTC Settlements in Privacy Shield Cases and With Lenovo Over Use of “Man-in-the-Middle” Software Highlight Vigorous Enforcement Efforts

Despite operating with only two of five Commissioners, the FTC has continued its data-privacy-enforcement efforts. It recently struck a major settlement with Lenovo over adware that was pre-installed on laptops and, unbeknownst to consumers, acted as a “man-in-the-middle,” with the ability to capture all of the data users transmitted to e-commerce websites they visited. It also reached settlements with three companies based on allegedly false claims of compliance with the U.S.-E.U. Privacy Shield framework. We explain the facts and circumstances that gave rise to the FTC enforcement actions and the terms of the settlements. See also “FTC Priorities for 2017 and Beyond” (Jan. 11, 2017).

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