U.S. judge orders Yahoo to face class-action suit over spying
Plaintiffs allege that the company tapped into e-mails to boost the effectiveness of its “targeted advertising”.
A U.S. judge ordered Yahoo Inc to face a nationwide class-action lawsuit accusing it of illegally intercepting the content of emails sent to Yahoo Mail subscribers from non-Yahoo Mail accounts, and using the information to boost advertising revenue.
In a decision late Tuesday night, U.S. District Judge Lucy Koh in San Jose, California said people who sent emails to or received emails from Yahoo Mail subscribers since Oct. 2, 2011 may sue as a group under the federal Stored Communications Act for alleged privacy violations.
She also said a class of non-Yahoo Mail subscribers in California since Oct. 2, 2012 may sue as a group under that state’s Invasion of Privacy Act.
Holders of non-Yahoo Mail accounts accused Yahoo of copying and then analyzing their emails, including keywords and attachments, with a goal of creating “targeted advertising” for its estimated 275 million Yahoo Mail subscribers, in addition to detecting spam and malware.