Brain-Training Firm, FTC Settle

San Francisco-based Lumos Labs, creator of the brain-training program Lumosity, will pay $2 million to settle deceptive-advertising charges raised by the US Federal Trade Commission.

Jan 6, 2016
Tracy Vence

PEXELSThe company behind the popular brain-training program Lumosity will pay the US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) $2 million in a settlement related to deceptive advertising charges, the agency announced yesterday (January 5). As part of the settlement, San Francisco-based Lumos Labs is to notify Lumosity customers of the FTC action and provide instructions to cancel auto-renewal billing. (The program is available for purchase through monthly or lifetime subscriptions.)

“Lumosity preyed on consumers’ fears about age-related cognitive decline, suggesting their games could stave off memory loss, dementia, and even Alzheimer’s disease,” Jessica Rich, director of the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection, said in the statement. “But Lumosity simply did not have the science to back up its ads.” (See “Opinion: Can the Brain Be Trained?”)

In a statement sent to reporters (via Reuters), Lumos Labs said the FTC charges were tied to “marketing language that has been discontinued.” STAT News reported that the company said its focus “will not change.”