Andrew E. Bigart

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The Commissioners of the FTC agreed, during an oversight hearing on November 27, 2018, to investigate the use of “loot boxes” in video games. Senator Hassan (D-NH), following up on questions she asked the newly appointed Commissioners during their confirmation hearings, specifically requested the FTC investigate loot boxes citing addiction concerns, (especially as it relates to children) and the resemblance of loot boxes in video games to gambling. A loot box is a digital…
In recognition of a rapidly changing ecommerce environment, Visa has created a new category of payment aggregator – a “marketplace” – for entities that bring “together Cardholders and retailers on an electronic commerce website or mobile application.” The new marketplace designation will have an immediate impact in the ecommerce market by clarifying the status and requirements applicable to ecommerce sites looking to add payment processing services to their platforms. While this model is likely to…
CFPB Expands Call for Evidence with Additional RFIs The CFPB has now issued six RFIs as part of Acting Director Mulvaney’s Call for Evidence Regarding Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Functions, which we have previously covered. The RFIs provide industry participants a chance to comment on the CFPB’s rules, policies, and practices regarding investigations, examinations, enforcement actions, and external engagement. Continue Reading
The days of signing your grocery receipt may be over soon, as the four major credit card brands (American Express, Discover, Visa, and Mastercard) are each making efforts to do away with signatures for various credit card transactions. The extent and geographic reach of these changes, however, are different for each brand, but one commonality is that the changes will begin in April 2018. In particular, MasterCard will no longer…
In the most recent edition of Digital Media Link, we explore the legal issues surrounding new technologies, with a particular focus on augmented and virtual reality. As we have seen time and again, new technologies do not necessarily mean new statutes or case law, which usually are slow to catch up. What is a lawyer to do, then, when advising on the legal issues associated with these new technologies? We do what we were…
Business lending, negative option programs, and enterprise risk management are at the forefront of the April 13 edition of Venable’s Consumer Financial Services Digest. In this issue, we discuss CFPB Director Cordray’s recent appearance before Congress where he noted that the CFPB has started engaging in supervisory activity regarding small business lending.…
For those of us who are regular readers of FTC press releases, the allure of last week’s announcement that the FTC settled its lawsuit against prepaid card company NetSpend Corporation may be more in the substance – or lack thereof – of the announcement itself. In four sentences, the FTC simply stated that the advertiser agreed to settle, that the Commission vote approving the final order was 2-1, and that Acting Chairman Ohlhausen issued a…
Consumer data, UDAAP, debt collection, and fintech licensing are at the forefront of the March 30 edition of Venable’s Consumer Financial Services Digest. In this issue, we discuss the importance of the Federal Trade Commission’s activities in the consumer finance world and the big changes on the horizon for credit reporting of public records data.…
Note: We have revised the description of the terms of the settlement in our recent blog post on the Carribean Cruise Line TCPA matter. Click here to read the corrected post. Having trouble sleeping and need something to read? Lucky for you the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (the Bureau) recently released its 1700+ page final rule for prepaid accounts under the Electronic Fund Transfer Act and the Truth in Lending Act. On the other hand, if…
In March, a new federal law quietly went into effect that places additional pressure on importers to develop compliance systems for their supply chains, including identification of items potentially made with forced labor. The Trade Facilitation and Trade Enforcement Act of 2015 (Trade Act) prohibits the import into the United States of goods, wares, articles, and merchandise mined, produced, or manufactured in a foreign country by convict, forced, or indentured labor. The new law comes…