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Online security » Protect yourself and your family » Protect your Children » Rules for website operators

Rules for website operators

The rules are set according to the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) of 1998 to make sure that children's privacy is protected while they are online.

Website Operators are obliged to:

  1. Post their privacy policy. Websites directed to children or those which knowingly collect information from kids under 13 must post a notice of their information collection practices. Website operators have to specify:
    • what type of personal information they collect, for instance: name, email address, home address, etc.
    • how the site uses the information and if it is forwarded to third parties.
    • a site contact.
  2. Inform parents on what information the website is collecting from the children.
  3. Get the parents' consent for the collection, disclosure and use of children's personal information.
    Consent is not required when the website:
    • collects an email address to respond to a one-time request from the child.
    • collects the child's email address to provide notice to the parents of the online contact information collected from the child
    • uses the information to ensure the safety of the child.
    • sends a newsletter or other information on a regular basis, as long as the site notifies the parents and gives them a chance to say no to the arrangement.
  4. Provide parents at any time, upon request, with all the necessary data regarding the information collected from their children. In order to do this, the website operators have to identify the parents requesting for this type of information.
  5. Allow parents to revoke their consent, and delete information collected from their children at the parents' request.

Website operators need to notify parents and get new consent again if they plan: to change the type of information they collect, to change the way they use the information or to offer the information to different third parties.

Parents can ask the website operator to:

  • condition the children's participation in a game, the offering of a prize, or other activities that disclose more personal information than is reasonably necessary
  • establish and maintain reasonable procedures to protect the confidentiality, security and integrity of personal information collected from the children.

Parents can revoke their consent at any time and ask the website operators to delete the information about their child from the website's database. When a parent revokes consent, the website must stop collecting, using or disclosing information from that child.

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