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Fortnite Maker Epic Games Fined $520 Million By FTC For Children’s Privacy

The FTC has publicly announced how it has charged Epic Games, who are the makers of Fortnite, a staggering $520 million.

The new charges are linked to children’s privacy, the FTC confirmed. The company is believed to have gone against the FTC violations on protecting young audiences’ privacy which is linked to the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act.

It hoped to deploy tricks that had to do with dark patterns, a common type of design trick. This is to dupe millions of payers into making a purchase that they may not have intended in the first place, as outlined in a new press release.

This particular payment is being divided in the form of two separate settlements. The first one has to do with the COPPA fining an amount worth $275 million, the largest penalty for going against such a rule. Similarly, it set forward another fine worth $245 million to refund plenty of clients for the dark pattern and associated billing practices. Now, Epic Games would be forced to pay out both fines and they’re ready to do it, knowing they’ve faltered. And in case you didn’t know, this is the largest fine ever made by the FTC and is also the biggest ever refund amount to arise in terms of a gaming endeavor.

The FTC was rather strict on what it had to say but that does not mean Epic Games would be paying the fine silently and walking out without a fight. It boldly declared that statutes that went out decades ago failed to specify how a gaming ecosystem worked. It boldly mentioned how the laws never change but the manner in which they are applied does.

They have accepted this agreement as they wish to see their project at the forefront when it comes to the like of consumer protection while giving players the best experience too.

For now, the gaming giant has updated the payment flows to send out a yes or a no so information continues to be updated and that entails clauses set out for cancellations on the way if any.

Other than the fact that kids can make payments so easily now, the FTC says they’re still at the center of another debate linked to the live text and voice from Epic’s communication initiative that is on by default.

Kids were at risk of being harassed and even facing abuse due to such features, especially due to the fact that Epic had no chance of ensuring kids and adults would be put together during online face-offs.

So much evidence shows how kids are getting exposed to the likes of bullying, harassment, threats, and trauma issues like taking their own lives while playing such games.

The firm has pointed fingers at another feature that gets the label of Cabined Accounts. If you are a player and your birthdate is too recent, your features like chat and purchasing are automatically disabled.

After kids sign up, the parent gets an email and they can adjust the settings if they want. For now, the feature is only available on Fortnite, Rocket League, and even Fall Guys.

This isn’t the only sign of trouble or danger for Epic Games. It similarly faces another lawsuit with the tech giant and leading iPhone maker Apple. This company accused the firm of embarking on behavior that’s anti-competitive.

You can see the game challenging Apple policy so it removes products from the App Store if the application opts to reroute clients to pay within the app and give out a 30% share to Apple.


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