Vizio smart TVs tracked viewers around the clock without consent

7 02 2017
Vizio, one of the world’s biggest makers of Smart TVs, is paying $2.2 million to settle charges that it collected viewing habits from 11 million devices without the knowledge or consent of the people watching them.

According to a complaint filed Monday by the US Federal Trade Commission, Internet-connected TVs from Vizio contained ACR—short for automated content recognition—software. Without asking for permission, the ACR code captured second-by-second information about the video the TVs displayed. The software collected other personal information and transmitted it, along with the viewing data, to servers controlled by the manufacturer. Vizio then sold the data to unnamed third-parties for purposes of audience measurement, analysis, and tracking.

“For all of these uses, Defendants provide highly specific, second-by-second information about television viewing,” FTC lawyers wrote in Monday’s complaint. “Each line of a report provides viewing information about a single television. In a securities filing, Vizio states that its data analytics program, for example, ‘provides highly specific viewing behavior data on a massive scale with great accuracy, which can be used to generate intelligent insights for advertisers and media content providers.'”

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The content in this post was found at https://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2017/02/vizio-smart-tvs-tracked-viewers-around-the-clock-without-consent/ and was not authored by the moderators of privacynnewmedia.com. Clicking the title link will take you to the source of the post.

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