Epic Games Fined Over $500 Million For “Tricking” Players

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has announced that Epic Games will be required to pay $520 million in fines for “design tricks” that resulted in millions of players making unintentional purchases in Fortnite. The fine is comprised of two separate settlements: a $275 million fine for violating the Children’s Online Privacy Protection rule, which imposes limitations on websites and online services directed at children under 13 years old, and a $245 million refund to customers for “dark patterns” that tricked players into making unintended in-game purchases through confusing button configurations and other deceptive interfaces. The FTC also found that Epic ignored over one million user complaints about wrongful charges and intentionally made it difficult for users to cancel or request refunds. In addition to the fines, Fortnite will be required to disable voice and text communication for children and teens under 13, or have their parents provide consent through privacy settings, and must delete personal information collected from users in violation of the COPPA rule and establish a comprehensive privacy program.

“We share the underlying principles of fairness, transparency and privacy that the FTC enforces, and the practices referenced in the FTC’s complaints are not how Fortnite operates,” Epic wrote. “We will continue to be upfront about what players can expect when making purchases, ensure cancellations and refunds are simple, and build safeguards that help keep our ecosystem safe and fun for audiences of all ages.”

Epic Games Statement

Source: IGN CNN

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