LinkedIn Being Sued For Allegedly Hacking Users’ Email Accounts

/ 5 years ago


Bloomberg reports that some LinkedIn users have filed a class action lawsuit against the social media giant for violating various data protection and privacy laws. The lawsuit accuses LinkedIn of hacking into users’ third part email accounts (such as Outlook, Gmail, Yahoo mail etc) and harvesting email addresses of non-LinkedIn members. LinkedIn are then alleged to have used these email addresses to send out multiple marketing emails to get more people to join the service.

“The wrongful conduct by LinkedIn that is the subject of this complaint arises from Linkedln’s practice of breaking into its users’ third party email accounts, downloading email addresses that appear in the account, and then sending out multiple reminder emails ostensibly on behalf of the user advertising LinkedIn to non-members”

The lawsuit also claims that the owners of those harvested email addresses will receive numerous marketing emails from LinkedIn with no way of unsubscribing from them. More controversy was raised by the fact principal software engineer at Linked in, Brian Guan, described his role at LinkedIn as:

“Devising hack schemes to make lots of $$$ with Java, Groovy and cunning at Team Money!”

LinkedIn is accused of violating several major laws including the California Invasion of Privacy Act, the Comprehensive Data Access and Fraud Act, the Wiretap Act, and the Common Law Right of Publicity. LinkedIn responded to the extensive accusations with the following response:

“LinkedIn is committed to putting our members first, which includes being transparent about how we protect and utilize our members’ data”

Full details of the lawsuit can be seen here.

Image courtesy of LinkedIn

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