Google has come to an agreement in the current case they have been involved in where a case was filed regarding IAPs that were unfairly charged to their parents credit cards from a variety of games such as Ice Age Village (Gameloft) and Air Penguins (Gamevil). According to the U.S. Federal Trade Commission children sometimes put hundreds of dollars on their parents’ credit cards without permission.
Apple was in a similar case not too long ago where they agreed to pay out $32.5 million in refunds for the same thing. In this game Google has agreed to pay roughly $19 million in refunds to people who has unfair charges applied to them. Also as part of the agreement, Google has agreed to make some changes to their billing system to help prevent further incidents like this happening again.
Some of these changes have already happened (March 2014) where it is much more clear when stating something is going to use real money in a purchase instead of virtual in-game money. This includes the new feature where users now have the option as to whether or not they wanted to be prompted to enter a password with each purchase. This way if children accidentally click a purchase link that requires real money, they are asked for the account password. If they don’t know it, they can not make a purchase. It used to be that you could make IAPs without having to enter in your password which led to this whole situation now.
Google used to urge parents to take the issue up with the game developers themselves but because the problem ended up becoming so widespread, the company itself has become liable in a way which is why they have now agreed to pay $19 million in refunds. No word on exactly when these refunds are going to start being issued.
Website Referenced: Rueters