FTC issues guides on Net

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The Federal Trade Commission today issued guidelines that will require Internet marketers to get parental consent before gathering personal information online from kids 13 and younger. The requirements are part of the FTC's final guidelines on how the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act of 1998 will be implemented. The new guidelines mean that starting next April, certain commercial Web sites must seek "verifiable parental consent" before collecting personal information from kids 13 and under. Sites also will be required to prominently display a link to their information-gathering practices on their home pages and at each location where data are collected. The guidelines also provide for a "safe harbor" option, where Web site operators can work with the FTC to create programs policing themselves.

Copyright October 1999, Crain Communications Inc.

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