Fortnite Maker Epic Games Fined $520 Million For Alleged Violation Of Children’s Privacy
Fortnite creator Epic Games will pay $520 million (approximately Rs 4,305 crore) to settle allegations that it illegally collected personal information from children and tricked people into making purchases, the court announced on Monday. Federal Trade Commission and Company.
It will pay a record fine of $275 million (about Rs 2,300 crore) for breaching a child privacy law and adopt strong default privacy settings for young people. Epic Games will also pay $245 million (approximately Rs. 2,000 crore) to reimburse consumers duped by so-called “dark models” into making purchases they had no intention of making. said the FTC.
“Epic used privacy-invasive default settings and deceptive interfaces that misled Fortnite users, including teenagers and children,” FTC Chair Lina Khan said in a statement.
The announcement comes as the agency has taken a more muscular role in monitoring the gaming industry, last week announcing a lawsuit against Microsoft over its $69 billion (roughly Rs. 6 lakh crore) bid for acquire Activision.
Epic said in a statement Monday that it eliminated pay-to-win and pay-to-level-up mechanics when two players compete and eliminated random item loot boxes in 2019. It also said it put in place an explicit yes/no choice to save the payment information.
He said players can request refunds via credit cards. “If a cardholder sees an unauthorized transaction on their statement, they can report it to their bank for reversal,” the company said in its statement.
To protect children, Epic said it has created features such as easier-to-access parental controls and a PIN requirement to allow parents to authorize purchases and a daily spending limit for children under 13. year.
The FTC said Epic employees had expressed concern about the company’s default settings in place for children, saying people should be required to sign up for voice chat. The FTC said voice and text chat should be disabled by default.
Children’s privacy advocates were pleased with the settlement, with Jeff Chester of the Center for Digital Democracy stating that “children should also have their data privacy rights better respected through this application of federal data privacy law. children (COPPA)”.
© Thomson Reuters 2022