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US Senators Put Pressure on Hacked Toymaker VTech

Two US senators have sent a letter to VTech, raising questions about the company’s privacy protections for children.
Image: jenny cu/Flickr

The massive hack suffered by toymaker VTech is starting to get attention from American legislators, who are questioning the company's security and privacy practices.

Sen. Ed Markey (D–Mass.) and Joe Barton (R –Tex.) sent a letter to VTech on Wednesday, listing a series of questions about the data breach, what data the company collects from children under 12, and how they protect it.

Last month, an anonymous hacker broke into the servers of VTech, a company that sells various internet-connected gadgets for kids, where he found the personal data of millions of parents and children, including names, emails and passwords, and even photos and chat logs.


Now, Senators Markey and Barton want to know what VTech is doing to avoid another destructive breach like this one, and why it even collected certain data in the first place.

"This breach raises several questions about what information VTech collects on children, how that data is protected, and how VTech complies with the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA)," the letter reads.

The two senators list nine specific questions to VTech, such as what kind of children data the company collects for each of its products, whether VTech shares that with data brokers, and how the company protects it.

VTech did not immediately respond to a request for comment

Here's the full text of the letter.

VTECH Letter From Senators Markey & Barton