Posted on 23rd Nov 2011 @ 9:24 AM
Brooke Rutledge of Mississippi has joined a growing number of Facebook users who are suing the social networking giant over allegations that it violates federal wiretap laws. Facebook may not be a phone company, but it has been accused multiple times of using cookies to track users even after they log out of the service. Palo Alto has since twice denied the allegations, and has also twice fixed the issue. In addition to this one, several similar lawsuits have been filed in other states, including Kansas, Kentucky, and Louisiana.
The Mississippi lawsuit, which seeks class action status for millions of Facebook users, was filed this week at the US District Court in Mississippi. Brooke asserts claims for breach of contract, unjust enrichment, trespassing, and invasion of privacy.
“Leading up to September 23, 2011, Facebook tracked, collected, and stored its users’ wire or electronic communications, including but not limited to portions of their internet browsing history even when the users were not logged-in to Facebook,” the complaint states. “Plaintiff did not give consent or otherwise authorize Facebook to intercept, track, collect, and store her wire or electronic communications, including but not limited to her internet browsing history when not logged-in to Facebook.”
Also this week, former Louisiana Attorney General Richard Ieyoub filed a federal lawsuit on behalf of Facebook user Janet Seamon. The allegations were almost identical: the social networking giant is accused of collecting and storing users’ Internet browsing history without their permission. Ieyoub is asking a judge to certify the lawsuit as a class action. It seeks unspecified punitive damages and statutory damages of $100 for each day that each class members’ data was “wrongfully obtained” or $10,000 for each alleged violation.
Last week, John Graham filed a federal lawsuit in US District Court in Kansas against the social networking giant. Graham is asking the federal court to decide whether the interception was intentional, the extent of communications intercepted and stored, and whether the court should prohibit Facebook from intercepting such communications when a user is not logged in. He is also seeking a preliminary and temporary injunction restraining Facebook from intercepting electronic information when users are not logged in and from disclosing any of the information already acquired on its servers. Last but not least, the lawsuit seeks statutory damages of $100 per day for each of the class members or $10,000 per violation, punitive damages along with attorney fees and court costs.
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