FTC officials have called upon data brokers Acxiom, Corelogic, Datalogix, eBureau, ID Analytics, Intelius, Peekyou, Rapleaf, and Recorded Future for the study. The companies involved have until 2013 February to send in their required data to the FTC.
"Datalogix is pleased to help the FTC further their understanding of marketing data uses and benefits," said Datalogix chief executive Eric Roza in a statement sent into V3.
The study will delve into the kind of data brokers collect, where they collect their information from and if they allow consumers to opt-out of types of data collection.
A similar study was commissioned earlier this year by the FTC. During that study officials discovered data brokers lacked transparency with consumers.
However, FTC officials also point out that in many ways data brokers offer positive benefits to consumers and the economy. Officials say that the study isn't a condemnation of the industry but rather an opportunity to better understand the field.
According to Acxiom's chief privacy officer Jennifer Barrett Glasgow, data brokers provide value for US businesses and the economy as a whole.
"Acxiom has a long history of proactively engaging with regulators and the public to clarify common misunderstandings about our business practices," said Glasgow.
"As such, we consider this request as an avenue to promote a better understanding of why what we do is vital for the American economy as it creates enormous value for people and businesses while respecting and protecting consumer's interests."
Data privacy has been a big issue for the FTC this year. The FTC held a data privacy workshop for businesses earlier this month. FTC officials were also asked to investigate the data harvesting policies of Google and Apple last March.
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