The US Federal Trade Commission said it had settled a complaint with the developer of an Android flashlight app which “deceived customers about how their geolocation information would be shared with advertising networks and other third parties”.
It also said that the company had “deceived consumers” by presenting them with an option to not share their information, even though it was shared automatically, rendering the option meaningless.
Jessica Rich, director of the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection, said: “When consumers are given a real, informed choice, they can decide for themselves whether the benefit of a service is worth the information they must share to use it. But this flashlight app left them in the dark about how their information was going to be used.”
Under the terms of the settlement, Goldenshores cannot misrepresent how consumer information is collected and shared and how much control consumers have over the way it is used.
The company also has to provide a “just-in-time” disclosure that fully informs consumers when, how and why their geolocation information is being collected, used and shared, and requires defendants to obtain consumers’ affirmative express consent before doing so.
Goldenshores will also be required to delete any personal information collected from consumers through the Brightest Flashlight app.