NEWS10 May 2012

Myspace to settle charges it misled users on privacy

Legal North America

US— Myspace, like Facebook before it, has agreed to settle charges brought by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) that its privacy policies misled users of the social networking site.


The FTC accused Myspace of passing on to advertisers the unique Friend IDs of users who had viewed particular pages. Advertisers could use these IDs to locate a user’s Myspace profile and gather from it additional profile data and link it to broader web browsing activity, the FTC said.

However, Myspace’s privacy policy promised that it would not share the personally identifiable information of users without first giving notice or receiving their permission to do so.

The proposed settlement bars Myspace from misrepresenting its privacy protection policies and safeguards and required it to submit to third-party audits of its privacy programme every two years for the next two decades.

FTC commissioners will vote on whether to make the settlement order final after a public comment period closes on 8 June.