Tech giant Microsoft will pay $20 million to settle U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) charges for illegally collecting personal information from children without their parent’s consent.

The company had been charged with violating the U.S. Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) by collecting personal information from children who signed up for its Xbox gaming system without notifying their parents or obtaining their parent’s consent, and by retaining children’s personal information, the FTC said in a statement.

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“Our proposed order makes it easier for parents to protect their children’s privacy on Xbox, and limits what information Microsoft can collect and retain about kids,” said Samuel Levine, director of the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection.

“This action should also make it abundantly clear that kids’ avatars, biometric data, and health information are not exempt from COPPA,” Levine added.

The law requires online services and websites directed to children under 13 to notify parents about the personal information they collect and to obtain verifiable parental consent before collecting and using any personal information of the children.

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