The House of Representatives passed the Consumer Protection and Recovery Act (H.R. 2668) Tuesday on a 221-205 vote. The bill explicitly authorizes the Federal Trade Commission to seek monetary relief for injured consumers in federal court and to require bad actors to return money obtained through illegal actions. The amendment to the FTC Act restores a key piece of the FTC’s Section 13(b) power, which the FTC previously used to obtain restitution and disgorgement for wronged consumers until the Supreme Court recently limited this authority in AMG Capital Management v. FTC. On Monday, the House Rules committee voted to advance the bill to a floor vote, with bill sponsors stressing that “the urgency is not hypothetical.” The White House has expressed also support for the bill. EPIC has long called for greater protection of consumer privacy through FTC enforcement and the imposition of financial penalties against companies who engage in unfair data practices. Recently, EPIC published a report that highlighted a number of key authorities that the FTC should use to address emerging privacy threats.
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