FTC: Amazon Refunding Kids' In-App Purchases

Amazon has begun to pay consumers for the unauthorized in-app charges that may have been run up by their kids.

Last month, the Federal Trade Commission and Amazon "paved the way," as the FTC put it, for consumers to get more than $70 million in refunds from charges between November 2011 and May 2016. That came when Amazon agreed to drop its legal challenge.

A federal judge ruled in April 2016 that, as the FTC had charged in filing suit in 2014, Amazon billed consumers for in-app charges by kids using mobile apps in online games and elsewhere that had been downloaded via Amazon's app store. Amazon did not get parents' permission for those charges, the FTC said and the court found.

But the court did not grant the FTC an injunction against similar future conduct, so the FTC appealed that portion of the decision, and Amazon appealed the underlying decision.

Deadline for submitting requests for refunds is May 28, 2018. Questions about refunds can be directed to Amazon at 866-216-1072.

John Eggerton

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.