FTC COPPA FAQs - Why does COPPA apply only to children under 13? What about protecting the online privacy of teens?

Compliance > COPPA
Q:  Why does COPPA apply only to children under 13?  What about protecting the online privacy of teens?
 
A:  In enacting the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act, Congress determined to apply the statute’s protections only to children under 13, recognizing that younger children are particularly vulnerable to overreaching by marketers and may not understand the safety and privacy issues created by the online collection of personal information. 
 
Although COPPA does not apply to teenagers, the FTC is concerned about teen privacy and does believe that strong, more flexible, protections may be appropriate for this age group.  See FTC Report: Protecting Consumer Privacy in an Era of Rapid Change:  Recommendations for Businesses and Policymakers (Mar. 2012), at 29, 60.  The FTC also has issued a number of guidance documents for teens and their parents.  These educational materials are available at www.OnguardOnline.gov.
 
 
 
 ADDITIONAL INFORMATION:
This information was obtained from the FTC’s webpage on “Complying with COPPA:  Frequently Asked Questions.”   https://www.ftc.gov/tips-advice/business-center/guidance/complying-coppa-frequently-asked-questions
 

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