January 25, 2022

News

News Network

KuuHuub Inc., Kuu Huub Oy and Recolor Oy to Pay Civil Penalty for Children’s Online Privacy Violations

6 min read
<div>The Department of Justice, together with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), today announced that KuuHuub Inc., a Canadian corporation, and two Finnish corporations, Kuu Huub Oy and Recolor Oy, have agreed to a settlement to resolve alleged violations of the FTC Act and the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act of 1998 (COPPA) associated with the companies’ “Recolor” mobile app and digital coloring book.</div>
The Department of Justice, together with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), today announced that KuuHuub Inc., a Canadian corporation, and two Finnish corporations, Kuu Huub Oy and Recolor Oy, have agreed to a settlement to resolve alleged violations of the FTC Act and the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act of 1998 (COPPA) associated with the companies’ “Recolor” mobile app and digital coloring book.

More from: July 21, 2021

News Network

  • Acting Assistant Secretary Carol Thompson O’Connell Travel to Islamabad, Pakistan
    In Human Health, Resources and Services
    Office of the [Read More…]
  • Mexican man sentenced for having meth welded to tires
    In Justice News
    A 33 year-old Mexican [Read More…]
  • Appointment of Ambassador Lucy Tamlyn as Chargé d’Affaires at Embassy Khartoum
    In Crime Control and Security News
    Antony J. Blinken, [Read More…]
  • Former Bureau of Prisons Corrections Officer Pleads Guilty to Sexually Abusing an Inmate and Witness Tampering
    In Crime News
    Eric Todd Ellis, 32, a former Bureau of Prisons (BOP) corrections officer at the FCI-Aliceville facility in Aliceville, Alabama, pleaded guilty today in federal court to one count of sexual abuse of a ward and one count of tampering with a witness.
    [Read More…]
  • Macau Travel Advisory
    In Travel
    Exercise normal [Read More…]
  • Tennessee Man Pleads Guilty to Federal Hate Crime
    In Crime News
    Christopher Beckham, 35, of Nashville, Tennessee, pleaded guilty Friday in U.S. District Court to violating the Matthew Shepard and James Byrd, Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act. Beckham was indicted in April 2018 after an investigation into an incident that occurred on Oct. 24, 2017.
    [Read More…]
  • U.S. Department of State Debars Seven Persons for Violating or Conspiring to Violate  the Arms Export Control Act  
    In Crime Control and Security News
    Office of the [Read More…]
  • Texas Business Owner Pleads Guilty to Tax Fraud
    In Crime News
    A Texas resident pleaded guilty Thursday to filing a false individual income tax return.
    [Read More…]
  • Indo-Pacific Transparency Initiative
    In Crime Control and Security News
    Office of the [Read More…]
  • Man Sentenced for COVID-19 Relief Fraud
    In Crime News
    A Florida man was sentenced today to 33 months in prison for fraudulently seeking over $7,263,564 in Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans guaranteed by the Small Business Administration (SBA) under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act.
    [Read More…]
  • The United States Partners with Australia and Japan to Expand Reliable and Secure Digital Connectivity in Palau
    In Crime Control and Security News
    Office of the [Read More…]
  • Warfighter Support: DOD Has Made Progress, but Supply and Distribution Challenges Remain in Afghanistan
    In U.S GAO News
    In fiscal year 2010, the Department of Defense (DOD) spent billions of dollars to move troops and materiel into Afghanistan, a mountainous, land-locked country with poorly developed infrastructure. The increase of 30,000 U.S. troops in Afghanistan as of August 2010, along with thousands of civilians and contractors supporting U.S. efforts, have required further development of DOD's already-complex distribution network to support and sustain U.S. military presence in Afghanistan. GAO conducted this review to assess distribution issues in Afghanistan, including (1) DOD's oversight of distribution operations; (2) DOD's performance in providing supplies and equipment; and (3) challenges that have affected DOD's ability to provide supplies and equipment. GAO reviewed joint doctrine and DOD policies on distribution, analyzed DOD delivery data, and interviewed DOD officials in the United States and in the U.S. Central Command area of responsibility, including Afghanistan, Pakistan, Kuwait, Qatar, and Bahrain.Although U.S. Transportation Command (TRANSCOM) has established some processes for oversight, it does not have full oversight of the distribution of supplies and equipment to the warfighter in Afghanistan. DOD's distribution pipeline includes four legs--intracontinental, intertheater, intratheater, and point of employment--and involves numerous organizations responsible for various aspects of the distribution process for delivering supplies and equipment to Afghanistan. TRANSCOM, as DOD's Distribution Process Owner, is responsible for overseeing the overall effectiveness, efficiency, and alignment of DOD-wide distribution activities. However, as applied and interpreted by DOD, TRANSCOM's oversight role does not extend all the way to final delivery to warfighters at forward-based combat outposts. Instead, its oversight efforts terminate at major logistics bases in Afghanistan. The oversight from these bases to combat outposts is carried out at varying levels and without uniformity by U.S. Forces-Afghanistan and its component services. As a result of this fragmented structure, TRANSCOM does not have the ability to conduct its oversight role all the way to final delivery to the warfighter, nor does it have the visibility over distribution performance from major bases to outposts necessary to fully oversee the effectiveness of the DOD-wide distribution system and coordinate potentially necessary improvements to the system. DOD has not always met delivery standards and timelines for shipments to major logistics bases in Afghanistan, and it cannot conduct a full assessment of its delivery performance for surface shipments due to incomplete data. DOD has more frequently met delivery standards for shipments transported by airlift than for shipments transported on surface routes, due in large part to the various difficulties in transporting cargo on surface routes through neighboring countries and inside Afghanistan. For example, from December 2009 through March 2011, surface shipments of requisitioned supplies did not once meet the time-definite delivery standard that calls for 85 percent of shipments to arrive within 97 days of being ordered. In contrast, commercial air shipments from the United States met DOD's delivery standard six times over that time frame. DOD has taken some steps to mitigate challenges in distributing materiel to forces operating in Afghanistan, but GAO identified several challenges that continue to hinder the Department's distribution efforts: (1) DOD does not have adequate radio-frequency identification information to track all cargo movements into and within Afghanistan. (2) DOD does not have a common operating picture for distribution data and integrated transportation systems in support of Afghanistan operations. (3) Complex customs clearance processes in Afghanistan and Pakistan continue to delay shipments of supplies and equipment. (4) DOD continues to face difficulties in collecting information on all incidents of pilferage and damage of cargo. (5) DOD is not effectively tracking and managing cargo containers for Afghanistan operations. Collectively, these issues will likely continue to affect supply operations in Afghanistan and limit DOD's oversight of the supply chain. As a result, DOD's ability to identify and address gaps in distribution to support current deployments and redeployments, sustainment of deployed units, and any future drawdown efforts may be limited. GAO makes 15 recommendations for DOD to clarify its distribution policy, improve documentation of performance, and address several other challenges. DOD concurred or partially concurred with 11 of GAO's recommendations, but did not concur with four recommendations.
    [Read More…]
  • FEMA Workforce: Long-Standing and New Challenges Could Affect Mission Success
    In U.S GAO News
    What GAO Found GAO's past work has identified longstanding challenges facing the Federal Emergency Management Agency's (FEMA) workforce. In May 2020, for example, GAO reported on the following workforce challenges within FEMA: Staffing shortages. The 2017 and 2018 disaster seasons created unprecedented demand for FEMA's workforce. FEMA deployed over 10,000 personnel during the peak of each season but faced shortages in over half of its cadres—operational or programmatic groups—when disasters began. For example, 18 of 23 cadres operated with 25 percent or less of staff available to deploy when Hurricane Maria made landfall in 2017. In addition, many employees—up to 48 percent in some cases—declined deployments due, according to FEMA officials, to burnout and austere conditions in the field. Workforce qualifications. GAO found that FEMA faced challenges deploying staff with the right qualifications and skills at the right times to meet disaster needs. Qualification status in FEMA's systems was not a reliable indicator of staff's ability to perform in the field. For example, in 14 of the focus groups GAO held with FEMA staff, participants said that staff who were designated as qualified in FEMA's system did not always have the necessary skills for their position. GAO recommended that FEMA develop a plan to address challenges in providing quality information to field leaders about staff qualifications. FEMA told GAO in December 2021 that its Field Operations Directorate has created plans to inform field leadership about staff skills and abilities, among other things. GAO also recommended that FEMA develop mechanisms to assess deployment outcomes. FEMA said it is modifying its force structure targets, with input from field leadership, and has implemented continuous data collection efforts. Staff development. GAO found shortcomings in FEMA's ability to ensure staff training and development for the skills needed in the field. For example, Reservists—often comprising the greatest proportion of FEMA staff in the field during a disaster—faced barriers to staff development and inconsistently received performance evaluations. GAO recommended that FEMA create a staff development program that addresses access to training, development, and feedback. In response, FEMA has taken a number of steps, including process improvements for development opportunities and creating a plan to consistently conduct performance reviews. GAO will continue to monitor FEMA's actions and assess the extent to which these actions address GAO's recommendations. These workforce challenges can affect FEMA's ability to achieve its mission to help people before, during, and after disasters. For example, GAO has reported on challenges with inadequate training and low morale for Disaster Recovery Center call center employees. Improving training and employee engagement and morale may help improve services provided to disaster survivors. With an increase in the frequency and cost of disasters, and with FEMA supporting numerous efforts outside of its normal core responsibilities, GAO is concerned that FEMA personnel may not be prepared to manage a catastrophic natural disaster or concurrent disasters. Why GAO Did This Study FEMA has long been tasked with the difficult job of leading the federal response to natural disasters. The increasing frequency of disasters and the additional responsibilities of responding to the COVID-19 pandemic and other events have stretched the FEMA workforce in unprecedented ways. This testimony discusses GAO's prior work on various FEMA workforce challenges. This statement is based on products GAO issued from July 2015 to August 2021. For those products, GAO reviewed and analyzed federal law, federal data, and agency documentation and interviewed federal, state, and local officials as well as representatives of stakeholder groups impacted by disasters. GAO also conducted some of these interviews as part of visits to locations affected by hurricanes in 2017 and 2018. Additionally, GAO conducted 17 focus groups with FEMA staff.
    [Read More…]
  • Two Former Louisiana Supervisory Correctional Officers Sentenced for Civil Rights Offense Arising Out of the Death of an Inmate
    In Crime News
    Two Louisiana men, former jail supervisors, were sentenced today to five years in prison and over four years in prison respectively for being deliberately indifferent to an inmate’s serious medical needs.
    [Read More…]
  • Mortgage Lending: Use of Alternative Data Is Limited but Has Potential Benefits
    In U.S GAO News
    What GAO Found To help determine a borrower's creditworthiness, mortgage lenders can use “alternative data”—consumer information not contained in a traditional credit report, such as a borrower's rent payments. But available data indicate that few mortgage loans have been underwritten with alternative data. In fiscal years 2016–2020, less than 0.1 percent of mortgages purchased by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac (government-sponsored enterprises that purchase about half of all originated mortgages) were made to borrowers without credit scores, an indication they were underwritten using alternative data. Similarly, very few loans the Federal Housing Administration, Department of Agriculture, and Department of Veterans Affairs insured or guaranteed went to such borrowers (see table). Mortgage Loans Made to Borrowers without Credit Scores, Fiscal Years 2016–2020 Institution Total loans Loans without borrower credit scores Percent of loans without borrower credit scores Fannie Mae 5,447,753 5,023 0.09 Freddie Mac 4,813,075 2,212 0.05 Federal Housing Administration 4,109,309 12,777 0.31 Department of Agriculture 599,864 14,174 2.36 Department of Veterans Affairs 2,833,813 2,739 0.10 Source: GAO analysis of Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, and federal agency data. | GAO-22-104380 Note: Data for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac represent loans purchased, and for the federal agencies, loans guaranteed or insured. According to agency officials, loans made to borrowers without credit scores very likely used alternative data for underwriting. Using alternative data in mortgage lending presents benefits and risks. Underwriting with alternative data can increase mortgage access for individuals who have little credit history with the national consumer reporting agencies, including many minority and lower-income consumers, according to literature GAO reviewed and stakeholders GAO interviewed. But the extent to which the use of alternative data could increase access depends on several factors, including whether the data increase credit scores enough to qualify consumers for mortgage loans. Alternative data usage could lead to better pricing for consumers if it improved lenders' ability to predict default risks, but also could present fair lending risks. For example, if alternative data are correlated with characteristics protected under fair lending laws (such as race or gender), borrowers in protected classes may be adversely affected by underwriting models using such data. Use of alternative data also can present privacy concerns if consumers lack knowledge and control of how these data are used. Public and private entities have taken steps to encourage use of alternative data in mortgage lending. For example, in September 2021, Fannie Mae updated its automated underwriting system to allow rental payments (a form of alternative data) to be included. In December 2020, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau issued rules that may facilitate use of alternative data. For example, one rule changed the general qualified mortgage definition to give lenders additional flexibility—which could include analyzing alternative data such as cash flows—when assessing a consumer's ability to repay. Lenders are protected from certain types of liability for loans meeting the definition. Why GAO Did This Study Roughly 45 million consumers lack a credit score from one of three major consumer reporting agencies, according to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, which limits their ability to qualify for a mortgage loan. To address this, an increasing number of lenders have been exploring use of alternative data—information not used in traditional credit scoring—to determine eligibility for mortgage loans. However, some policymakers and regulators have raised questions about potential risks of using such data in mortgage underwriting. GAO was asked to review the use of alternative data in mortgage lending. This report describes (1) the extent to which mortgage loans were originated using alternative data in fiscal years 2016–2020, (2) potential benefits and risks associated with using alternative data in such lending, and (3) efforts to encourage lenders' use of alternative data. GAO analyzed data provided by government-sponsored enterprises and federal agencies for fiscal years 2016–2020; reviewed studies by agencies and other researchers; and interviewed federal financial regulators, agencies with mortgage lending programs, lenders, government-sponsored enterprises, and other industry participants. For more information, contact Michael E. Clements at (202) 512-8678 or ClementsM@gao.gov.
    [Read More…]
  • Justice Department Releases Report On Modernizing The Administrative Procedure Act
    In Crime News
    WASHINGTON – The Justice Department released a report today on the need for Congress to update and improve the Administrative Procedure Act (APA), the 74-year-old statute setting forth the procedures agencies must follow when regulating individuals, businesses, non-profits, and state and local government entities. The report, entitled Modernizing the Administrative Procedure Act, discusses how the administrative state has developed in ways not foreseen by the APA in 1946, how the APA might be legislatively improved, and how this Administration’s improvements to agencies’ regulatory processes could inform modernizing the APA. The Justice Department, which significantly shaped the original APA, hopes that the ideas and insights discussed in the report will encourage and inform much needed action by Congress to modernize the APA.
    [Read More…]
  • Global War On Terrorism: Fiscal Year 2006 Obligation Rates Are Within Funding Levels and Significant Multiyear Procurement Funds Will Likely Remain Available for Use in Fiscal Year 2007
    In U.S GAO News
    Because of broad congressional interest, GAO is examining the costs of military operations in support of the Global War on Terrorism (GWOT) under the Comptroller General's authority to conduct evaluations on his own initiative. In September 2005, GAO reported the Department of Defense (DOD) cannot ensure reported GWOT obligations are complete, reliable, and accurate, and recommended improvements. In this report, GAO (1) compared supplemental and annual appropriations identified for GWOT in fiscal year 2006 to the military services' reported obligations as of June 2006 and their cost projections for the remainder of the fiscal year, and (2) examined DOD's efforts to improve the reliability of GWOT obligation data. For this engagement, GAO analyzed fiscal year 2006 GWOT related appropriations and reported obligations, and DOD's corrective actions.As of June 2006, which represents 9 months (75 percent) of fiscal year 2006, the military services have reported obligating about $51.6 billion (55 percent) of the $93.3 billion they received for GWOT in supplemental and annual appropriations for military personnel, operation and maintenance, and procurement. Our analysis of reported obligations and the military services' forecasts of their likely costs for fiscal year 2006 suggest that the rates of obligation for military personnel and operation and maintenance are within fiscal year 2006 GWOT funding levels and significant amounts of multiyear procurement funds will likely remain available for use in fiscal year 2007. The rates of obligation for military personnel are within funding levels for all military services except the Army, which plans to transfer about $591 million in funds from other appropriations accounts to cover its military personnel obligations. The rates of obligation for operation and maintenance are within funding levels for all military services. As of June, the military services reported obligating about 85 percent of military personnel funds and 60 percent of operation and maintenance funds. For various reasons, most notably being that supplemental funds were not appropriated until June 2006, the military services do not expect to obligate a large portion of procurement funds, which generally are available for multiple years, and therefore these funds will remain available in fiscal year 2007. The military services received about 32 percent ($6.8 billion) of procurement funding in annual appropriations and 68 percent ($14.7 billion) in the supplemental appropriation. As of June, the military services reported obligating about 68 percent of the procurement funds received in the annual appropriation. DOD and the military services have taken specific steps intended to improve the accuracy and reliability of their reported GWOT obligation data. Some problems remain with transparency over certain costs and inaccuracies in reported obligations. In response to GAO's prior recommendations, DOD now requires components to perform a monthly variance analysis to identify and explain significant changes in obligations and to attest to the accuracy of monthly obligation reports, and affirm it provides a fair representation of ongoing activities. Because these efforts are in the early stages of implementation, GAO has not fully evaluated their impact. Existing cost reporting procedures limit transparency of certain obligations because DOD continues to report large amounts in miscellaneous "other" categories. Also, DOD's cost reports for fiscal year 2005 understated total GWOT obligations for that year because they did not initially include about $1.1 billion in obligations tied to the training and equipping of Afghan and Iraqi security forces. Without transparent and accurate cost reporting, Congress and DOD will continue to be unable to reliably know how much the war is costing, examine details on how appropriated funds are being spent, or have historical data useful in considering future funding needs. On the basis of GAO's work, DOD updated its guidance on the reporting of obligations in miscellaneous "other" categories and revised its September 2005 cost-of-war report to more fully reflect past obligations.
    [Read More…]
  • The Department of State Dedicates the New U.S. Embassy in Niamey, Niger
    In Crime Control and Security News
    Office of the [Read More…]
  • Texan resentenced following terrorism conviction and appeal
    In Justice News
    The 27-year-old Spring [Read More…]
  • Office of the Historian, Foreign Service Institute Release of Foreign Relations of the United States, 1981–1988, Volume IV, Soviet Union, January 1983–March 1985
    In Crime Control and Security News
    Office of the [Read More…]

Crime

Network News © 2005 Area.Control.Network™ All rights reserved.