Home Business FTC prohibits NGL from allowing children on anonymous messaging app, must be under 13.

FTC prohibits NGL from allowing children on anonymous messaging app, must be under 13.

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FTC prohibits NGL from allowing children on anonymous messaging app, must be under 13.

In a groundbreaking settlement, federal regulators have banned a digital platform named NGL from serving users under 18 due to its aggressive marketing tactics and alleged deception in using artificial intelligence to curb cyberbullying. The app, popular among children and teenagers, tricked users into paying for subscriptions by sending computer-generated messages and offering a service to reveal the real identities of users. NGL has agreed to pay $5 million and stop marketing to kids and teens in order to settle the lawsuit, also resolving allegations of violating children’s privacy laws.

Despite NGL’s immense popularity with a user base exceeding 200 million, concerns over the app’s exposure of children to harmful material prompted the FTC’s strict enforcement actions. The settlement signifies a milestone in the government’s efforts to protect children online and hold tech companies accountable for exploiting vulnerable youth for profit. NGL’s co-founder expressed cooperation with the investigation and viewed the resolution as an opportunity to enhance the app’s policies and security measures, despite contesting some allegations regarding the user base’s age.

The bipartisan approval of the settlement by the FTC underscores the grave bipartisan concern over children’s online safety, with both Republican and Democratic commissioners voting in favor. NGL is required to implement strict measures to prevent underage access to the app, delete data obtained from young children without parental consent, and cease any misrepresentations about its ability to filter out cyberbullying. This settlement reflects the agency’s commitment to enforcing children’s online safety regulations and holding tech companies responsible for their obligations to young users.

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