WASHINGTON —Two US senators introduced a bill on Tuesday to ban social media companies like Facebook and Twitter from tricking consumers into giving up their personal data. The bill from Mark Warner, a Democrat, and Deb Fischer, a Republican, would also ban online platforms with more than 100 million monthly active users from designing addicting games or other websites for children under age 13. The bill takes aim at practices that online platforms use to mislead people into giving personal data to companies or otherwise trick them. The so-called “dark patterns” were developed using behavioral psychology. “Misleading prompts to just click the ‘OK’ button can often transfer your contacts, messages, browsing activity, photos, or location information without you even realizing it,” Fischer said in a statement issued by both senators. Restrictions on how social media companies collect information about users could hurt their ability to sell advertisements, a key source of profit. A website aimed at tracking dark patterns identifies behavior, such as a website or app showing that a user has new notifications when they do not. Warner said in an interview on CNBC that the legislation could be included in a federal privacy bill that lawmakers in the… Read full this story
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