FTC Sues GoodRx for Sharing Health Data

by | Feb 6, 2023 | Homepage, News | 0 comments

On February 1, 2023, the Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) filed a first-of-its-kind enforcement action against GoodRx alleging unfair and deceptive business practices and violations of the Health Breach Notification Rule (“HBDNR”).[1] The FTC alleged GoodRx shared users’ health data with several third parties, including Google, LLC, Meta Platforms, Inc. (f/k/a Facebook), and Criteo, Corp. The FTC seeks injunctive relief, as well as civil penalties for these violations. GoodRx has already agreed to pay a $1.5 million civil penalties, subject to court approval.

GoodRx is a mobile app and website that allows consumers to compare prescription drug prices and access prescription drug coupons.[2] GoodRx offers a free service, as well as a paid membership service that provides greater discounts. The platform also offers users the ability to sign up for prescription reminders and refill notifications and obtain telehealth services. According to the FTC, GoodRx promised users their personal health information would only be shared with third parties for limited purposes and would never be shared with advertisers.

The FTC alleges that since at least 2017, GoodRx has repeatedly broken these promises and shared users’ personal health information with advertisers and ad platforms such as Facebook, Google, and Criteo, as well as other third-parties such as Twilio and Branch.

Beyond just sharing users’ information, the FTC alleges that GoodRx further exploited users by running advertising campaigns based on their personal health information. By matching individual users with their personal health information, GoodRx was allegedly able to design advertising campaigns that targeted specific individuals based on their health conditions.

With prescription drug prices soaring and economic fears omnipresent, GoodRx allegedly manipulated consumers by deceiving them into believing their services were free or low cost. In actuality, GoodRx users unwittingly paid for these discounts by sacrificing control over their sensitive and valuable personal health information.

If you have any questions or would like to discuss this matter further, please contact Christian Levis at clevis@lowey.com or Amanda Fiorilla at afiorilla@lowey.com.

[1] Complaint, U.S.A. v. GoodRx Holdings, et al., No. 23-cv-460, ECF NO. 1, ¶ 1 (N.D. Cal. Feb. 1, 2023) available at https://www.ftc.gov/system/files/ftc_gov/pdf/goodrx_complaint_for_permanent_injunction_civil_penalties_and_other_relief.pdf.

[2] What is GoodRx? How Does it Work?, GoodRx, https://support.goodrx.com/hc/en-us/articles/115004944026-What-is-GoodRx-How-does-it-work- (last visited Feb. 3, 2023).