The U.S. Federal Trade Commission has weighed in on the bankruptcy court dispute concerning the sale of RadioShack customer data, siding with Apple and AT&T, who say the customer data collected during the sale of their products should not be included in the sale.
In a letter sent to Elise Frejka, the court-appointed privacy ombudsman in the matter, FTC Consumer Protection Director Jessica Rich pointed out that RadioShack originally collected the data with the promise that it wouldn’t sell the data “to anyone at any time,” according to Law360. Rich argued that sharing any of 21 categories of data without restrictions would break that guarantee, and represent a “deceptive or unfair practice” under Section 5 of the FTC Act.
FTC recommendations included that the court not sell the customer data as a separate asset, that any buyer be in the same line of business as RadioShack, and that the buyer agree to follow the same policies in place as when RadioShack collected the data.
As an alternative, the FTC would accept RadioShack acquiring consent from customers before transferring the data, deleting personal data for anyone who opts out.
Hedge fund Standard General won an auction held last week for the RadioShack data. The company also won intellectual property, as well as 1,700 stores. The winning bid is subject to court approval.