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Kids racking up huge in-app bills on Kindles, Android is all your fault, Amazon – US court

And you're gonna pay

A US federal court has ruled against Amazon in its case with the FTC over youngsters breaking the bank with in-app purchases.

The Seattle US Western District Court found the retail giant liable for charges children had racked up making in-game purchases on their parents' mobile devices without requiring the proper authorization. Amazon was accused of making it all too easy for kids to spend dosh willy-nilly on Android and Kindle devices via its Appstore bazaar.

"The court concludes that Amazon's injurious practices lasted up until users were clearly informed both about the existence of in-app purchases and the scope of their consent by virtue of the revised in-app purchase prompt on June 3, 2014," the ruling [PDF] reads.

"The court finds that continuous unauthorized purchases on First Generation devices, not provided the benefit of updated password prompts, constitutes additional relevant injury."

The FTC brought suit against Amazon in 2014 as part of a series of claims the commission filed against mobile app stores for allowing kids to run up huge bills for in-app purchases without parental permission or notification.

The FTC has already settled similar cases with Apple over charges made through the iOS App Store and Google for its Play Store.

"We are pleased the federal judge found Amazon liable for unfairly billing consumers for unauthorized in-app purchases by children," FTC chairwoman Edith Ramirez said in a statement.

"We look forward to making a case for full refunds to consumers as a result of Amazon's actions."

The monetary damages in the case have yet to be determined by the court. ®

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