FTC Cracks Down on Sale of Data Brokers Selling Geolocation Information

Within a week, the FTC separately accused data brokers X-Mode and InMarket of violating the Federal Trade Commission Act by unfairly and deceptively collecting and selling consumers geolocation information, which could be used to “track consumers to sensitive locations, including medical facilities, places of religious worship, places that may be used to infer an LGBTQ+ identification, domestic abuse shelters, and welfare and homeless shelters.” To settle the FTC’s claims of “significant privacy violation[s],” both X-Mode and InMarket agreed not to share or sell sensitive location information. The FTC, media, and politicians have applauded these settlements as successes and a “big deal.” Both orders are part of a broader push by the Biden administration to expand privacy protections in the wake of the Dobbs decision overturning Roe v. Wade.  

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