KidSwitch: identifying kids in apps and sites

Every day over 170,000 kids go online for the first time, mostly using an internet that was only ever designed for adults. So it’s very easy for kids to find the wrong content; or to look at the right content, but on a platform which wrongly assumes they’re adults. Historically the approach to this issue … Continue reading KidSwitch: identifying kids in apps and sites

#Kidtech Episode 10: Dona Fraser, Director of Children’s Advertising Review Unit (CARU)

Hosted in the Radio Waves building in New York -  the original home of Nikola Tesla - Dylan sits down with Dona Fraser, Director of CARU, the children’s arm of the advertising industry’s self-regulatory group.   An experienced data privacy and entertainment lawyer, Dona talks through her background in music, the early days of COPPA … Continue reading #Kidtech Episode 10: Dona Fraser, Director of Children’s Advertising Review Unit (CARU)

5 product development challenges of building a new category

I posted earlier about my functional CTO story, detailing how my role of CTO evolved over time which can be found here. It’s one challenge to be CTO in a ‘normal’ startup and quite a separate challenge to also be at the forefront of a new category. A little over 5 years ago, we started … Continue reading 5 product development challenges of building a new category

3 questions every kids-focused brand should ask their media partners

Under GDPR-K and COPPA you are responsible for any data collection that happens on your site, or by your brand, even if by a third party. These are the questions you should be asking all of your agency partners (e.g. any party that plans your kid-focused campaigns or implements your media). My brand isn’t a … Continue reading 3 questions every kids-focused brand should ask their media partners

Enabling COPPA-compliant programmatic advertising through our KidSafe Filter

The recent enforcement action against Oath’s ad exchange (formerly known as AOL) for breaching COPPA has put a spotlight on programmatic advertising to children. The case highlighted some important issues including the fact that using the ‘COPPA flag’ does not work. In fact, the only guaranteed way for advertisers to be compliant in programmatic ad … Continue reading Enabling COPPA-compliant programmatic advertising through our KidSafe Filter

The TikTok COPPA fine has dramatically upped the stakes in kids digital privacy

The FTC dramatically upped the ante on COPPA enforcement this week with a record-setting fine of $5.7m against the app formerly known as Musical.ly (now TikTok). The settlement says TikTok breached COPPA by knowingly collecting personal information from children without first obtaining parental consent, as required by the law. It represents a direct challenge to … Continue reading The TikTok COPPA fine has dramatically upped the stakes in kids digital privacy

5 things we learned while refining Verifiable Parental Consent for kids apps

Apps and games that need to collect personally identifiable information (PII) from kids require the parents to give their consent. Given the sensitive nature of this information, we take extra measures to make sure that the parent of the child is really the one giving the consent. Under COPPA and GDPR-K, one of the ways … Continue reading 5 things we learned while refining Verifiable Parental Consent for kids apps

Why COPPA flags don’t work (and just cost Oath/AOL $5M)

The announcement that Oath has just been hit with the largest fine in the history of COPPA underlines the volume and quality of child-directed inventory being bought and sold within the mainstream (adult) programmatic exchanges. Exchanges are processing ‘kids inventory’ either knowingly or unknowingly. The current mechanism for publishers to surface this inventory to buyers … Continue reading Why COPPA flags don’t work (and just cost Oath/AOL $5M)

How to implement COPPA-compliant push notifications in your kids app

Push notifications are a useful tool for re-engaging users and getting kids back into your app. Under both COPPA and GDPR-K, sending push notifications to kids is deemed collecting personal information, similar to an email address, and therefore requires an appropriate level of parental consent to enable. Under COPPA (applicable to your US audience), certain … Continue reading How to implement COPPA-compliant push notifications in your kids app

What every game developer needs to know about getting parental permissions right

If you’re building a game or app for kids (under-13 in the US or under-16 in Europe), you need to consider how you’re going to manage age gates and parental permissions. Both are essential to ensure compliance with data privacy laws (COPPA and GDPR-K), but both are complex user flows and mismanaging them can create … Continue reading What every game developer needs to know about getting parental permissions right