A location data broker is being sued by the Federal Trade Commission for selling geolocation data that reveals people’s trips to abortion facilities.
According to NBC News, the FTC filed a complaint against Kochava, an adtech business with headquarters in Sandpoint, Idaho, on Monday. According to the lawsuit, Kochava engaged in misleading or unfair business practices by selling sensitive data.
“Kochava collects a wealth of information about consumers and their mobile devices by, among other means, purchasing data from other data brokers to sell to its own customers. Kochava then sells customized data feeds to its clients to, among other purposes, assist in advertising and analyzing foot traffic at stores or other locations. Among other categories, Kochava sells timestamped latitude and longitude coordinates showing the location of mobile devices.”
According to the lawsuit, Kochava makes information on people’s trips to abortion facilities and those who perform abortions public. Abortion clinics are referred to as women’s reproductive health clinics by the FTC in the case.
The head of the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection, Samuel Levine, stated in a statement released on Monday that “Kochava is enabling others to identify individuals and exposing them to threats of stigma, stalking, discrimination, job loss, and even physical violence.”
On August 19, Townhall reported that Kochava was under threat from the FTC due to its business methods. President Biden issued an executive order guaranteeing access to abortion in July, and he called on the FTC to assist in securing abortion-related data.