By Jonathan Stempel
(Reuters) – A federal appeals court on Thursday revived nationwide litigation accusing Facebook Inc (FB.O) of violating users’ privacy rights by tracking their internet activity even after they logged out of the social media website.
The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco said Facebook users could pursue several claims under federal and California privacy and wiretapping laws.
A spokeswoman for Facebook said the proposed class action was without merit, and the Menlo Park, California-based company will continue defending itself.
Facebook users had accused the company of quietly storing cookies on their browsers that tracked when they visited outside websites containing “like” buttons, and then selling personal profiles based on their browsing histories to advertisers.
U.S. District Judge Edward Davila in San Jose, California had dismissed the lawsuit in 2017, including claims under the federal Wiretap Act, and said the users lacked legal standing to pursue economic damages claims.
But in Thursday’s decision, Chief Judge Sidney Thomas wrote for a three-judge panel that users had a reasonable expectation of privacy, and had sufficiently alleged a “clear invasion” of their right to privacy.
The panel also said California law recognized a right to recoup unjustly earned profits, regardless of whether a defendant’s conduct directly caused economic harm.
“Facebook’s user profiles would allegedly reveal an individual’s likes, dislikes, interests, and habits over a significant amount of time, without affording users meaningful opportunity to control or prevent the unauthorized exploration of their private lives,” Thomas wrote.
Citing Facebook’s data use policy, he also said the plaintiffs “plausibly alleged that Facebook set an expectation that logged-out user data would not be collected, but then collected it anyway.”
Reporting by Jonathan Stempel in New York Editing by Noeleen Walder and Matthew Lewis
Affiliate News Feeds
- Internet of Things
- Industry News
The tech titan Amazon used its show in Las Vegas to talk about watery matters, supply chains and much more. The post AWS re:Invent 2022: A tiered tour of technology… [...]
In a recent interview with Ravi Pendekanti, SVP of Product Management & Marketing at Western Digital, he explained how they have expanded their HDD technology to lower total cost of… [...]
Our picks for the top Amazon Cyber Week deals to ease the stress of those who work from home. The post 5 Amazon Cyber Week deals sure to make remote… [...]
UK-based IoT connectivity platform provider seeks élan and style by snapping up French firm. The post Wireless Logic continues acquisition spree with IoThink Solutions deal appeared first on TechRepublic. [...]
Consider securing your remote work setup with a three-year subscription to a top VPN. Windscribe Pro is more than 70% off today only. The post Lock in 3 years of… [...]
The company’s products seek to address real-time data transport, edge data collection instruments. The post NVIDIA unveils supercomputing and edge products at SC22 appeared first on TechRepublic. [...]
An account takeover (ATO), in which criminals impersonate legitimate account owners to take control of an account, are on the rise in Asia and across the world. Fraudsters are swindling… [...]
Experts warn that API attacks will soon become the most common type of web application attack. As a result, organizations and their security vendors need to align across people, processes,… [...]
Read how to install the Trello app in macOS and why it will make your project management even easier. The post How to install the Trello app on macOS and… [...]
Find out if one of these top seven Wrike alternatives are an ideal project management solution for you and your team. The post Top 7 Wrike alternatives for project and… [...]