Children's Advertising Review Unit - Advertising to Children

Children’s Advertising Review Unit

The Children’s Advertising Review Unit (CARU), the nation’s first Safe Harbor Program under the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA), helps companies comply with laws and guidelines that protect children under age 13 from deceptive or inappropriate advertising and ensure that, in an online environment, children's data is collected and handled responsibly. When advertising or data collection practices are misleading, inappropriate, or inconsistent with laws and guidelines, CARU seeks change through the voluntary cooperation of companies and where relevant, enforcement action.

Program Impact

CARU was established in 1974 to support self-regulation in the advertising industry and promote responsible advertising to children. The results of CARU’s work is available to the public.

 

 

Monitoring and Enforcement

CARU monitors child-directed media to ensure that advertising is truthful, accurate, appropriate, and compliant with its self-regulatory guidelines, and that online marketing is compliant with both the CARU guidelines and the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (“COPPA”).

Pre-Screening Service

From concept to final cut, CARU’s pre-screening services help businesses and agencies spot and correct problems before ads and promotional websites go live. Take advantage of our one-on-one support as you navigate COPPA and CARU compliance.

COPPA Safe Harbor Services

CARU is the first FTC-approved Safe Harbor Program under the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) and can help your company achieve its business goals while ensuring compliance with COPPA requirements, other applicable online data privacy laws, and CARU’s guidelines.

Guidelines & Procedures


CARU leads the development and ongoing management of advertising guidelines for children under age 13. To help businesses and advertisers, CARU provides education, one-on-one support, and legal guidance on: 

 

  • How to be compliant in the delivery of everything from digital ads to product packaging
  • The art of delivering for an impressionable and vulnerable child audience
  • Children’s privacy, unique to digital content and data collection for children under age 13 (these guidelines reflect changes in COPPA)
  • How to approach product presentations, appropriate disclosures, sweepstakes and contests, safety, endorsements, and sales pressure

 

August 2022 Compliance Warning: Advertising Practices in the Metaverse

News & Blog

Decision

CARU Finds Gameloft’s Disney Getaway Blast App in Violation of COPPA and CARU’s Advertising and Privacy Guidelines; Gameloft Agrees to Corrective Actions

McLean, VA – November 1, 2022 – The Children’s Advertising Review Unit (CARU) has found Gameloft S.A. in violation of the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) and CARU’s Self-Regulatory Guidelines for Advertising and for Children’s Online Privacy Protection. Upon receipt...

Read the Decision Summary
Decision

CARU Finds Tilting Point Media in Violation of COPPA and CARU’s Advertising and Privacy Guidelines; Company Agrees to Corrective Actions

McLean, VA – September 7, 2022 – The Children’s Advertising Review Unit (CARU) found Tilting Point Media, owner and operator of the SpongeBob: Krusty Cook-Off app, in violation of COPPA and CARU’s Self-Regulatory Guidelines for Advertising and for Children’s Online Privacy Protection.

Read the Decision Summary
Blog

A Cool Sweepstakes Can Get You in Hot Water

When marketing to younger consumers, contests and sweepstakes can be effective vehicles for increasing brand engagement but can also present risks and traps for brands making use of them.
Read more
Blog

The Problems with Endorsements

BBB National Programs shared its concerns about endorsement practices in a comment submitted last week to the FTC as a part of proposed updates to its Endorsement Guides.
Read more

 

BBB National Programs provides summaries of all case decisions in the Case Decision Summary library. For the full text of National Advertising Division, National Advertising Review Board, and Children’s Advertising Review Unit decisions, subscribe to the Online Archive. For members of the press, the full text of any BBB National Programs decision is available by emailing the request to press@bbbnp.org

 

 

 

Upcoming Events

Wirewheel’s 2022 Winter SPOKES Privacy Technology Conference

Dona Fraser, Senior Vice President, Privacy Initiatives, BBB National Programs will speak on enforcement under CCPA and will also join the Ad Leaders Roundtable discussion
Learn more
Dec 14, 2022 Virtual

IAPP Global Privacy Summit 2023

Mary K. Engle, EVP Policy, BBB National Programs will participate in The COPPA Conundrum: The Future of Child Privacy Regulation and Enforcement
Learn more
Apr 05, 2023 Washington, DC
 

 

 

CARU Supporters

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CARU Supporters have access to benefits and resources including:

 

  • Access to CARU experts to answer your questions about advertising and privacy issues directed to children

  • Complimentary advertising pre-screening and guidance from expert staff

  • Invitation to the annual Supporters’ Council Meeting to discuss industry challenge

 

 

 

Interested in more information about becoming a CARU Supporter?  Contact our National Partners team to learn how.

 

 


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