The August Chronicle reports that the Better Business Bureau is urging parents to examine the data-gathering practices and privacy policies at “Dear Santa” Web sites:
More than 60 domain names have been registered in the name of Santa Claus, offering children a wide range of opportunities to e-mail St. Nick.
Sadly, some of the Web sites aren’t always so trustworthy and can potentially be a dangerous way to share personal information. The Better Business Bureau is advising parents to do their homework before letting their child write to Santa this holiday season. […]
It should also state whether the company shares information with third parties, including advertisers, and whether the company publicly discloses the information or retains the information for any future purpose.
CARU offers the following ‘Dear Santa’ site review tips:
• Check to see what they want you to hand over. Web sites directed to children should not ask a child to disclose more information than is reasonably necessary to participate in the activity – a first name and e-mail address, for instance. Anything more from a child could be problematic.
Read the full story for more review tips.