EPIC Urges FTC to Address Dark Patterns in Updated Digital Ad Guidance

August 4, 2022

EPIC has filed comments urging the Federal Trade Commission to protect consumers against the harmful effects of dark patterns and deceptive practices in digital advertising. The FTC last updated its digital advertising guidance in 2013. EPIC advised the Commission to establish updated guidelines for sponsored content, to identify and target rapidly evolving uses of dark patterns in advertising, and to develop more robust guidance regarding online disclosures when users navigate multiple webpages. EPIC previously filed a complaint with the D.C. Attorney General explaining how Amazon employs dark patterns when customers try to cancel their Amazon Prime subscriptions, continuing to collect, retain, and use misdirected subscribers’ personal data. EPIC and coalition partners have also urged the FTC to investigate Google and Amazon’s use of deceptive user interfaces.

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