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Hyperbeard pays FTC penalty for using kids' data without consent

Full $4 million penalty reduced to $150,000 due to Hyperbeard's inability to pay

Kids app developer HyperBeard will pay a $150,000 settlement to the Federal Trade Commission for illegally collecting information from young players.

The settlement was reached following an official complaint from the FTC in which it alleged that HyperBeard violated the terms of the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act Rule.

Specifically, HyperBeard is alleged to have collected data from players under the age of 13 using persistent identifiers without obtaining parental consent. The data from the identifiers was used to target advertising.

"If your app or website is directed to kids, you've got to make sure parents are in the loop before you collect children's personal information," said Andrew Smith, director of the FTC's Bureau of Consumer Protection, in a statement.

"This includes allowing someone else, such as an ad network, to collect persistent identifiers, like advertising IDs or cookies, in order to serve behavioral advertising."

Both HyperBeard CEO Alexander Kozachenko and managing director Antonio Uribe were named in the complaint. They have been ordered to destroy the data, and issued with a $4 million penalty.

The $4 million penalty will be suspended if HyperBeard pays $150,000, due to its inability to pay the full amount.

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Matthew Handrahan avatar
Matthew Handrahan: Matthew Handrahan joined GamesIndustry in 2011, bringing long-form feature-writing experience to the team as well as a deep understanding of the video game development business. He previously spent more than five years at award-winning magazine gamesTM.
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