"History sniffing" must stop, FTC tells Epic Marketplace

12/6/2012 | Bloomberg Businessweek

The Federal Trade Commission has ordered ad company Epic Marketplace to stop using "history sniffing” tools to collect data on Web users' browsing habits, and to destroy information already gathered using the technology. Epic used browsing histories to determine which consumers likely suffered from impotence, had memory loss, or were struggling with fertility issues, and then served up related ads, the FTC said. "Consumers searching the Internet shouldn't have to worry about whether someone is going to go sniffing through the sensitive, personal details of their browsing history without their knowledge," said FTC Chairman Jon Leibowitz.

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