FTC Focusing on Core Mission of Strengthening Consumer Protection
As part of the FTC’s aggressive implementation of Presidential directives geared toward eliminating wasteful, unnecessary regulations and processes, the Commission recently issued a press release explaining that it is undertaking numerous regulatory reform initiatives.
- New groups within the Bureau of Competition and the Bureau of Consumer Protection are working to streamline demands for information in investigations to eliminate unnecessary costs to companies and individuals who receive them.
- Both enforcement Bureaus are reviewing their dockets and closing older investigations, where appropriate.
- The entire agency continues to work to identify unnecessary regulations that are no longer in the public interest.
- The Bureau of Consumer Protection is actively reviewing closed data security investigations to extract key lessons for improved guidance and transparency.
- The Bureaus of Consumer Protection and Economics are working together to integrate economic expertise even earlier in FTC investigations to better inform agency decisions about the consumer welfare effects of enforcement actions.
- Acting Chairman Ohlhausen has established a new capability within her office to collect and review ideas on process streamlining and operational efficiency opportunities from across the agency.
“I welcomed the President’s directive, and we’re already working hard to achieve it. The FTC will continue to pursue the right answer for consumers, but we will work hard to get there as efficiently as we can. We are focusing our resources where they will do the most good for the public and eliminating wasteful, legacy regulations and processes that have outlived their usefulness. American taxpayers deserve and expect nothing less from us,” Acting Chairman Ohlhausen stated.
These initiatives are only the beginning, according to Ohlhausen, “improving efficiency and productivity never stops in the private sector, government should operate no differently. I intend to keep focused on this issue, working collaboratively with career staff and agency leadership to identify and implement further streamlining and process improvements.”
Meanwhile, the new administration openly seeks to undo the Obama administration’s tech legacy and return Internet service providers to the FTC’s jurisdiction. Earlier this month, Internet privacy rules on broadband providers were repealed.
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Richard B. Newman is an Internet marketing compliance and regulatory defense attorney at Hinch Newman LLP focusing on advertising and digital media matters. His practice includes conducting legal compliance reviews of advertising campaigns, representing clients in investigations and enforcement actions brought by the Federal Trade Commission and state Attorneys General, commercial litigation, advising clients on promotional marketing programs, and negotiating and drafting legal agreements.
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