Mealey's Data Privacy

  • March 21, 2018

    Facebook Says App Developer Shared User Data With Analytics Firm

    MENLO PARK, Calif. — In a March 16 press release, Facebook Inc. announced that user data that a third-party app developer improperly shared with an analytics firm in 2015 had not been destroyed despite assurances it had received to the contrary.

  • March 20, 2018

    Surveillance Appeals Court: ACLU Has Standing To Seek Unredacted Documents

    WASHINGTON, D.C. — In a March 16 ruling, the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court of Review found that the American Civil Liberties Union has standing to pursue its petition seeking unredacted versions of U.S. Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC) opinions related to the federal government’s surveillance program under the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution (In re: Certification of Questions of Law to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court of Review, No. 18-01, FISC Review).

  • March 20, 2018

    Yahoo Tells Supreme Court ECPA Does Not Give Decedent’s Family Access To Emails

    WASHINGTON, D.C. — In a May 5 reply brief supporting its petition for certiorari, the successor to Yahoo! Inc. urges the U.S. Supreme Court to review a Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court ruling granting a deceased man’s siblings access to his email account, arguing that the Electronic Communications Privacy Act (ECPA) does not permit such access absent an account holder’s consent (Oath Holdings Inc. v. Marianne Ajemian, et al., No. 17-1005, U.S. Sup.).

  • March 20, 2018

    Uber Drivers Defend Standing To Sue Over 2014 Data Breach

    SAN FRANCISCO — In a March 15 brief in California federal court, two former drivers with Uber Technologies Inc. oppose the ride-hailing service’s latest motion to dismiss their putative class action over a data breach, asserting their standing to pursue unfair competition and negligence claims related to their ex-employer’s purported duty to safeguard their personally identifiable information (PII) that was exposed in the breach (Sasha Antman v. Uber Technologies Inc., et al., No. 3:15-cv-01175, N.D. Calif.).

  • March 16, 2018

    Google, Class Members Defend Privacy Suit Cy Pres Settlement To Supreme Court

    WASHINGTON, D.C. — The settlement of a privacy class action over search query referrer headers appropriately included a payment of $5.3 million to privacy advocate cy pres recipients, Google LLC and the class representatives argue in a pair of March 9 briefs, urging the U.S. Supreme Court to deny a petition for certiorari filed by two class members who had objected to the settlement as collusive and not of benefit to the class (Theodore H. Frank, et al. v. Paloma Gaos, et al., No. 17-961, U.S. Sup.).

  • March 16, 2018

    5th Circuit: Consultants Who Created Fake BP Spill Claimants Were Properly Tried

    NEW ORLEANS — A Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on March 14 held that a federal judge in Mississippi did not err when refusing to hold separate trials for claims brought against two consultants who created fake claimants for benefits under the Deepwater Horizon Economic and Property Damages settlement, finding that the defendants were not prejudiced by their co-defendants’ defenses (United States of America v. Gregory P. Warren, et al., No. 16-60843, 5th Cir., 2018 U.S. App. LEXIS 6352).

  • March 15, 2018

    Final Approval Granted To Settlement Of Seagate Phishing Class Action

    SAN FRANCISCO — Five months after preliminarily approving settlement of claims brought against Seagate Technology LLC by a class of employees over a 2016 phishing incident that exposed their personally identifiable information (PII), a California federal judge on March 14 granted final approval to the settlement, as well as to incentive and attorney fee awards (Everett Castillo, et al. v. Seagate Technology LLC, No. 3:16-cv-01958, N.D. Calif.).

  • March 15, 2018

    SuperValu, Albertson’s Data Breach MDL Dismissed By Minnesota Federal Judge

    MINNEAPOLIS — A Minnesota federal judge on March 7 dismissed with prejudice a multidistrict litigation case accusing two supermarket chains of failing to protect customers’ personal identifying information (PII) after their payment-processing network system was breached by hackers, finding that the plaintiffs were unable to amend their complaint to allege standing and injury (In Re: SuperValu, Inc., No. 14-2586, D. Minn., 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 36944).

  • March 12, 2018

    Class Claims Over Yahoo Data Breaches Mostly Survive Renewed Dismissal Motion

    SAN JOSE, Calif. — In her second ruling addressing a motion by Yahoo! Inc. to dismiss a putative class action over data breaches that exposed users’ personally identifiable information (PII), a California federal judge on March 9 deemed most of the claims sufficiently alleged, while partly dismissing unfair competition, customer records and punitive damages claims (In re: Yahoo! Inc. Customer Data Security Breach Litigation, No. 5:16-md-02752, N.D. Calif.).

  • March 09, 2018

    Home Depot To Pay $27.8M Settlement Over Illegal Storage Of Hazardous Waste

    SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Home Depot U.S.A. has agreed to pay $27.8 million to resolve allegation brought by the state of California that it violated the Hazardous Waste Control Law (HWCL) and California’s unfair competition law (UCL) by illegally storing and disposing of hazardous wastes at its stores and facilities, according to a March 7 filing in California state court (California v. Home Depot U.S.A., No. RG18893251, Calif. Super., Alameda Co.).

  • March 09, 2018

    9th Circuit Finds Zappos Customers Have Standing To Sue Over Data Breach

    SAN FRANCISCO — Reversing a trial court’s dismissal order, a Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on March 8 found that customers of Inc. have standing under Article III of the U.S. Constitution to sue the online retailer over a 2012 data breach based on the risk of identity theft from the exposure of their personally identifiable information (PII) (In re Inc. Customer Data Security Breach Litigation, No. 16-16860, 9th Cir., 2018 U.S. App. LEXIS 5841).

  • March 09, 2018

    Federal Judge Narrows Claims In Data Collection Class Suit, Recommends New Claims

    CHICAGO — An Illinois federal judge on March 5 dismissed the federal claim brought by two fitness phone application users in a class complaint over unauthorized collection of their data, narrowed their state claim and recommended two possible alternative federal statutes under which the plaintiffs could file a claim (Jessica Vasil, et al. v. Kiip, Inc., No. 16-9937, N.D. Ill., 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 35573).

  • March 07, 2018

    Preliminary Settlement Reached In Long-Running Google Street View Case

    SAN FRANCISCO — In a March 6 stipulation filed in California federal court, Google LLC and a putative class announced that they have preliminarily settled privacy claims related to personal payload data collected during Google’s Street View photographing efforts, informing the court that a preliminary settlement agreement would be forthcoming (In re Google LLC Street View Electronic Communications Litigation, No. 3:10-md-02184, N.D. Calif.).

  • March 06, 2018

    Pennsylvania Attorney General Sues Uber Over 2016 Data Breach

    PHILADELPHIA — Pennsylvania Attorney General (AG) Josh Shapiro on March 5 filed suit against Uber Technologies Inc. in Pennsylvania state court, alleging violation of state consumer protection and notification laws in the ride-sharing service’s yearlong delay in informing its drivers in the commonwealth about a 2016 data breach that exposed their personally identifiable information (PII) (Pennsylvania v. Uber Technologies Inc., No. NA, Pa. Comm. Pls., Philadelphia Co.).

  • February 28, 2018

    Insurer Seeks Judgment In Coverage Dispute Over Fraudulent Tax Returns

    BLUEFIELD, W.Va. — A  businessowners liability insurer on Feb. 12 moved for judgment on the pleadings in its declaratory judgment lawsuit challenging coverage for seven lawsuits alleging that the insured's employee filed fraudulent tax returns (Ohio Security Insurance Co. v. K R Enterprises, Inc., et al., No. 15-16264, S.D. W.Va.).

  • February 27, 2018

    Microsoft, Government Debate Extraterritorial Reach Of SCA In High Court

    WASHINGTON, D.C. — The U.S. Supreme Court heard oral arguments Feb. 27 from the U.S. government and Microsoft Corp. as to whether a warrant issued under Section 2703 of the Stored Communications Act (SCA) can compel disclosure of data that is stored in overseas servers (United States v. Microsoft Corp., No. 17-2, U.S. Sup.).

  • February 27, 2018

    Judge Rejects Jurisdictional Challenge To Facebook Biometric Class Action

    SAN FRANCISCO — The plaintiffs in a putative class action alleging violations of Illinois’ Biometric Information Privacy Act (BIPA) by Facebook Inc. sufficiently alleged concrete injury under the statute, a California federal judge ruled Feb. 26, denying the social network’s motion to dismiss for what it called the plaintiffs’ failure to allege real world harm (In re Facebook Biometric Information Privacy Litigation, No. 3:15-cv-03747, N.D. Calif., 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 30727).

  • February 25, 2018

    Federal Judge Seals Administrative Record In Disability Insurance Dispute

    SEATTLE — A Washington federal judge on Feb. 12 granted a motion jointly filed by both parties to seal the entire administrative record of a disability insurance dispute, finding that the plaintiff’s right to medical privacy and the inability to redact portions of the record outweigh the public’s right to access the information (David Alan Anderson v. Unum Life Insurance Company of America, No. C17-0659-JCC, W.D. Wash., 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 22661).

  • February 21, 2018

    Supreme Court Told ECPA Permits Disclosure Of Decedent’s Email Account

    WASHINGTON, D.C. — In a Feb. 20 brief opposing certiorari, the siblings of a deceased Massachusetts man tell the U.S. Supreme Court that a state court ruling ordering the disclosure of the contents of their brother’s Yahoo email account does not run afoul of the Electronic Communications Privacy Act (ECPA) and creates no questions or conflicts meriting high court review (Oath Holdings Inc. v. Marianne Ajemian, et al., No. 17-1005, U.S. Sup.).

  • February 21, 2018

    Interlocutory Appeal Denied In Stolen Data Suit Against Intuit

    SAN JOSE, Calif. — Plaintiffs alleging negligence by Intuit Inc. related to incidents of fraudulent tax return filings were denied the opportunity to pursue an interlocutory appeal of an order compelling arbitration on Feb. 16, when a California federal judge concluded that an appeal would not serve to advance resolution of the case (In re Intuit Data Litigation, No. 5:15-cv-01778, N.D. Calif.).

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