Thursday, October 20, 2022
HomeHealthcareFTC accuses information firm of monitoring visits to reproductive well being clinics

FTC accuses information firm of monitoring visits to reproductive well being clinics

The Federal Commerce Fee has sued information dealer Kochava for allegedly promoting information that tracks when individuals go to reproductive well being clinics. 

“The place customers search out well being care, obtain counseling, or have fun their religion is personal info that shouldn’t be offered to the very best bidder,” stated Samuel Levine, director of the FTC’s Bureau of Shopper Safety in a information launch. “The FTC is taking Kochava to court docket to guard individuals’s privateness and halt the sale of their delicate geolocation info.”

In line with the FTC criticism, Kochava collected information that confirmed when cellular phone customers visited reproductive well being clinics. That information may then be tracked to single-family residences, thereby giving clues a few affected person’s id. The identical kind of knowledge may be used to establish medical professionals who carry out, or help within the efficiency, of reproductive well being providers.

The Idaho-based firm purchases geolocation information from a whole lot of hundreds of thousands of cell units, in keeping with the FTC. It then matches time-stamped latitude and longitude areas with distinctive cell machine identification numbers and packages the ID information right into a custom-made information feed.

Kochava sells these information feeds to shoppers who use the information for promoting and analyzing foot site visitors at their shops and different areas. 

Together with monitoring visits to reproductive well being clinics, Kochava additionally collected information on visits to dependancy restoration facilities, locations of worship and shelters for unhoused individuals. This info may reveal the placement of people who find themselves escaping home violence or different crimes, the FTC stated within the information launch.

“The discharge of this information may expose them to stigma, discrimination, bodily violence, emotional misery, and different harms,” stated the FTC assertion of the menace to customers. 

The FTC claims that Kochava printed advertising supplies that marketed the product’s capacity to establish particular households through the use of geotracking information.

In July, the fee introduced it could crack down on efforts to cease the unlawful sharing of well being information. Though the fee didn’t immediately state it was related to the overturning of Roe v. Wade, many legal professionals have expressed issues about well being privateness in mild of the laws. 

The fee is internet hosting a public discussion board on industrial surveillance on September 8.

Picture: David Tran, Getty Photos



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