Consumer groups challenge kids Internet seal

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Consumer groups on April 6 termed inadequate the procedures presented by the first company seeking to monitor kids Web sites to confirm compliance with a new children's privacy law. The Center for Media Education and the Consumer Federation of America filed objections with the Federal Trade Commission to PrivacyBot's request to begin offering a privacy seal to marketers. The groups contend the PrivacyBot proposal doesn't go far enough to audit sites independently of consumer complaints; shouldn't charge to process complaints (the proposal was to charge $1.50); and should provide tougher penalties for sites that fail to comply. PrivacyBot couldn't be reached for comment. The FTC has announced it will implement Children's Online Privacy Protection Act in part by letting "safe harbor" self-regulatory groups oversee their own members, but the groups' regulatory plans need FTC approval.

Copyright April 2000, Crain Communications Inc.

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