On May 12, 2011, the Federal Trade Commission announced that the operators of 20 online virtual worlds have agreed to pay $3 million to settle charges that they violated the Children's Online Privacy Protection (COPPA) Rule by collecting and disclosing personal information from hundreds of thousands of children under age 13 without their parents' prior consent. The FTC noted that this settlement is the largest civil penalty for a violation of the FTC's COPPA Rule.
On November 30, 2010, the Federal Trade Commission announced a settlement with EchoMetrix, Inc. with respect to charges that the company failed to adequately disclose its privacy practices. EchoMetrix sells software that allows parents to monitor their children's online activities. The FTC alleged that the company engaged in a deceptive act or practice in violation of Section 5 of the FTC Act by failing to inform parents that the information the software collected about their children would be disclosed to third parties for marketing purposes.