Amazon sued over in-app purchases

Amazon sued over in-app purchases


The Federal Trade Commission announced last week that they have sued Amazon for allegedly making it too easy for children to make in-app purchases without a parent's permission. "In-app purchases" are typically for items or rewards offered within mobile games that enhance a game or allow a user to advance levels.

The FTC said in its suit that it seeks a court order for the company to refund money to parents affected by the unauthorized charges. It also wants the court to ban Amazon from charging parents for in-app purchases without their consent.

Amazon altered its policy in 2012, requiring passwords for purchases over $20. The FTC continued to receive complaints, according to the lawsuit. In 2013, Amazon began requiring greater password protections but still allowed for a 15-minute window for unlimited purchases after an authorizing password was used.

The lawsuit comes after weeks of talks between the FTC and Amazon about the company's policy for in-app purchases. The FTC asked Amazon to abide by guidelines the agency has put forward for rival Apple, which settled similar FTC charges earlier this year.

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