A group of 18 companies including giants Facebook, Apple, Twitter, and Yelp have been served with a lawsuit that makes claims of privacy-invasion. The companies are accused of dishing out users’ personal information through their mobile applications.
Filed by a group of 13 individuals in the U.S. District Court, the suit charges the companies with gathering information via smartphone users’ address books. The lawsuit alleged that once users downloaded or purchased the company’s mobile applications, the apps then stole and uploaded the owners’ address book without the owners’ consent.
The majority of the plaintiffs is from Austin, Texas and identify themselves as iPhone and Android mobile owners. They seek permanent sanction against illegal data collection and the obstruction of all collected personal data obtained illegally through mobile apps.
The lawsuit was spurned in part by a recent issue concerning social networking service Path, who happens to be one of the defendants in the case. Path issued an official apology after a blogger accused it of collecting personal information from mobile users’ address books. The apology stated that Path used the data in order to improve friend suggestions.
However, the issue with Path spurned an awareness of privacy insecurity. Mobile users are never safely protected from privacy invasion.