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Thursday, November 02, 2006

Consumer groups file FTC complaint over 'deceptive' online advertising schemes
Brett Murphy at 1:35 PM ET

[JURIST] The Center for Digital Democracy and the US Public Interest Research Group [advocacy websites] have filed a 50-page complaint [PDF text; press release] with the US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) asking it to look into allegedly "deceptive and unfair" advertising practices of Internet companies [CDD backgrounder], including web giants Microsoft, Google, and Yahoo! [corporate websites]. The consumer advocacy groups claim that current privacy protections mandated by the FTC [official website] are inadequate and that advertising practices "aggressively track us wherever we go, creating data profiles to be used in ever-more sophisticated and personalized 'one-to-one' targeting schemes."

The complaint further maintains that "the FTC has largely ignored the critical developments of the electronic marketplace that have placed the privacy of every American at risk." A Google spokesperson told the Washington Post that "the idea that trust of the user is paramount" is key in development of new advertising mechanisms. The Washington Post has more.

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