Magazine article Information Management

VIZIO to Pay Millions for Spying through Internet-Connected TVs

Magazine article Information Management

VIZIO to Pay Millions for Spying through Internet-Connected TVs

Article excerpt

As reported on FTC.gov and other outlets, VIZIO Inc., a manufacturer of smart TVs, has agreed to pay $2.2 million to settle a regulatory complaint that it tracked its consumers on their Internet- connected smart TVs without their consent or knowledge.

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) said VIZIO collected viewing habits from 11 million devices, beginning in February 2014, using new and previously sold TVs that hadn't shipped with automated content recognition (ACR) software installed. The software periodically added IP addresses to the collected data and made it possible to connect to more detailed information, such as age, sex, marital status, household size, income, and more.

The Office of the New Jersey Attorney General and the FTC alleged that VIZIO tracked what consumers watched on their Internet-connected smart TVs through software the company turned on by default. According to the complaint, VIZIO provided IP addresses and viewing data from TVs to third parties who used the information to analyze the effectiveness of advertising. …

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