back to article VTech hack fallout: What is a kid's privacy worth? About 22 cents – FTC

The US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) today agreed to a settlement deal with a children's electronic toymaker it had accused of collecting kids' personal information and then failing to properly secure that data. The government watchdog said VTech will pay $650,000 and agree to a set of privacy and security requirements in …

  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Cents on the dollar - Just the cost of doing business

    What do IoT corporations want with all this data...??? They don't have the expertise to exploit it, never mind secure it. Were they hoping it might prove useful at some point or planning to peddle it to data brokers / Facebook???

    1. DNTP

      Re: Cents on the dollar - Just the cost of doing business

      What do they want with this data? Their business model is that the value of collected customer data subsidizes the development and production of the device, software, or website. To do that they need to try and find reasons to maximize the data set collected- in the case of children's products, it's often bullshitted rationalized as providing a personalized experience; hence, the "necessity" of providing personal information.

      VTech's product is the person buying the device or service, and the actual customer is whoever pays for the product data.

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Talk about living in a bubble

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/VTech

    Some super suit made the decision to slurp the data, but no one else there had the chops to secure it, or know what the hell was actually going on?

    "VTech corporate security was unaware their systems had been compromised and the breach was first brought to their attention after being contacted by Bicchierai prior to publication of the article. Upon notification, the company took a dozen or so websites and services offline."

    "Commenting on the leak, the unnamed attacker expressed their disgust with being able to so easily obtain access to such a large trove of data, saying: 'Frankly, it makes me sick that I was able to get all this stuff. VTech should have the book thrown at them'” and explained their rationale for going to the press was because they felt VTech would have ignored their reports and concerns."

  3. sloshnmosh

    And....nobody goes to jail

    Several times a day I am reminded that only private citizens get arrested and jailed.

    When's the last time you've heard of an "average Joe" getting the option to payout 22 cents to their victim and not have to admit any wrongdoing?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: And....nobody goes to jail

      Agreed but this is how capitalism works, greedy government creates laws whereby in cases of wrong doing by corporations they fine them and take the cash, this leaves more in the pot for the politicians to cream off with whatever pork barrel scam they can think of.

      Thee's no money to made in sending rich directors to jail who are probably donors to your election pot anyway.

  4. sloshnmosh

    What kind of Mickey Mouse operation?

    Who the Hell does VTech think they are? Illegally collecting childrens data is Disney's job!

    1. Danny 14

      Re: What kind of Mickey Mouse operation?

      i was thinking more why do people put their REAL details online? i wouldnt put my childs information into any internet toy.

  5. This post has been deleted by its author

  6. GcdJ

    What a small fine

    removed - duplicated

  7. GcdJ

    What a small fine

    If this data hack impacted Europeans and it was to occur when the GDPR legislation is active (after May 25th 2018) then the maximum fine that the EU data commissioners could impose is EUR20m. That would be more reasonable and much more likely to focus the minds of these (and other) directors.

    1. Andrew 6

      Re: What a small fine

      GDPR fine could be 4% of global annual turnover - based off Wiki vtech had revenue of $1,898.9 in 2014 so assuming that's roughly similar now the fine could have been near $76 million

  8. razorfishsl Silver badge

    Vtec's latest offering is a "home security system"

    Connects to the broadband, provides phone Voip, but also control of security & appliances. via a mobile device and part of a massive promotion with the local phone company in HK.

    no thanks

  9. This post has been deleted by its author

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