Formal Review 102.2019 - PlantSnap, Inc.

Arlington, VA – October 8, 2019 – The BBB National Programs’ Digital Advertising Accountability Program referred the mobile app developer PlantSnap, Inc. to the Federal Trade Commission today. The referral was initiated after PlantSnap failed to participate in a self-regulatory review process looking into data privacy practices related to geolocation data and advertising.

The referral follows an inquiry by the Accountability Program into PlantSnap’s compliance with the Digital Advertising Alliance’s Self-Regulatory Principles, which are industry best practices for privacy in online advertising. The Accountability Program inquired into PlantSnap’s practices during routine technical monitoring of mobile apps for compliance with the DAA Principles involving the possible collection and use of data for interest-based advertising, including precise geolocation data. Interest-based advertising, also known as targeted advertising, uses this web- and app-derived data to infer people’s likely interests and serve ads to them on the basis of those interests. 

“We are disappointed that PlantSnap did not respond to our repeated inquiries,” said Jon Brescia, vice president of the Accountability Program. “Our track record with companies has been overwhelmingly positive, with roughly 98% participation. Self-regulation relies on that kind of commitment—not just from the ad tech industry, but also from the publishers who interface directly with the end users.” 

Today’s referral brings to 107 the number of public actions taken by the Accountability Program and the third referral of its existence.

Latest Decisions

Decision

Children’s Advertising Review Unit Finds Outright Games in Violation of COPPA and CARU’s Advertising and Privacy Guidelines; Company Agrees to Corrective Actions

McLean, VA – July 6, 2022 – The Children’s Advertising Review Unit (CARU) has found Outright Games, owner and operator of the Bratz Total Fashion Makeover app, in violation of the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) and CARU’s Self-Regulatory Guidelines for...

Read the Decision Summary
Decision

National Advertising Division Recommends Dakota Nutrition Discontinue Claims that Dietary Supplements Contain Elderberry

New York, NY – June 29, 2022 – The National Advertising Division (NAD) recommended that Dakota Nutrition, Inc. discontinue challenged express and implied claims that its dietary supplements contain the ingredient elderberry. This recommendation applies to marketing claims for three products: Extra Strength Elderberry...

Read the Decision Summary
Decision

In Two Fast-Track SWIFT Cases, National Advertising Division Recommends Advertiser Claims be Discontinued in One, Modification of Disclosures in Other

New York, NY – June 28, 2022 – The National Advertising Division (NAD) of BBB National Programs closed two Fast-Track SWIFT cases in May 2022. In these cases, AT&T Services, Inc. challenged Charter Communications, Inc.’s (Spectrum) claim that AT&T’s internet service provides...

Read the Decision Summary
Decision

National Advertising Division Finds Challenged DuckDuckGo Privacy Claims Supported; Recommends Clarifications for Use of App

New York, NY – June 23, 2022 – The National Advertising Division (NAD) determined that DuckDuckGo provided a reasonable basis for certain claims related to its Privacy Browser mobile app and Privacy Essentials desktop extension. 

Read the Decision Summary