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Sony illegally took user data, U.S. says

December 11, 2008|bloomberg news

Sony BMG Music Entertainment was sued by the U.S. on Wednesday for collecting and disclosing personal data about 30,000 children without informing their parents.

The Federal Trade Commission filed the civil lawsuit in federal court. The suit, which alleges violations of the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act, seeks unspecified damages and an injunction.

"Sony Music collected, used and/or disclosed personal information from children without first providing their parents with notice of its information practices," according to the complaint.

The FTC alleges that Sony Music, a Sony Corp. unit that operates more than 1,100 music-related websites, collected information from more than 30,000 children under age 13 since 2004, despite contending that visitors that young wouldn't be allowed to register on the sites.

"Sony Music did not take steps required by the rule to provide parents with direct notice of its information prior to collecting, using or disclosing their children's personal information," the complaint says.

Sony did not immediately comment.

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