5 Companies That Had a Rough Week


The developer of a popular flashlight app for Android smartphones this week settled Federal Trade Commission charges that the application secretly provided cellphone location data to marketers, even after consumers rejected the terms of service.

Under the agreement, Goldenshores Technologies, which developed the free "Brightest Flashlight" application, will send users a prominent disclosure notice and get a consumer's consent before collecting or sharing information, according to an AP story.

The FTC was tipped off by complaints posted online from users of the application who wondered why a flashlight app was tapping into their mobile phone's geolocation data, the AP story said. The FTC found that the app recorded a phone's location and unique identification code and then sent that data to advertising networks and other third parties, even though Goldenshore's privacy policy promised that information wouldn't be shared outside the company.