UnrollMe Facing a Privacy Class Action Lawsuit

UnrollMe, as well as Slice Technologies, face a privacy class action lawsuit. The suit accuses companies of violating the Electronic Communications Privacy Act and Stored Communications Act. The privacy class action lawsuit states that a web service UnrollMe Inc. and its parent Slice Technologies Inc. sold users’ data to third parties. The complaint mentions that they did it secretly. That’s to say, customers had no idea of their actions. In fact, Jason Cooper filed a privacy class action in California federal court. Nina Eisenberg of Edelson PC. is representing the plaintiff.

Cooper is a resident of Michigan, who seeks to represent two classes. First, the plaintiff aims to represent a nationwide class of any individual who either sent or got emails during the timeframe that UnrollMe was installed. Second, Cooper is seeking to represent a nationwide class of any person who installed UnrollMe. Furthermore, what he seeks is forbidding these companies to sell customers’ data without their consent, as well as damages ( $1,000 per class member.) The lead plaintiff accuses Slice and UnrollMe of scanning subscribers’ inboxes and selling this information to make profits.

Is UnrollMe selling users’ data?

The privacy class action lawsuit asserts that customers believed that UnrollMe and Slice help them drop off their mailing lists. However, they also succeeded in selling users’ personal data to third parties, like Uber without permission. It’s relevant to refer to an article of the New York Times. It discusses illegal practices of UnrollMe, which was founded in 2011. Later Slice Technologies Inc. purchased it. The article also informs readers that Uber is among third parties that bought data from UnrollMe.  Uber was the purchaser of those users’ accounts, who were using Lyft’s application. As it known, Lyft is the competitor of Uber.  By the way, currently Uber is facing a class action lawsuit for spying on Lyft drivers.

Cooper mentions in his complaint that customers gave UnrollMe an access to their accounts. He adds that they took this step for unsubscribing from various unnecessary newsletters and advertisements. However, the company took advantage of users and sold their private information in order to make money.

The plaintiff also notes that Unroll.me has a privacy policy. It informs users that they may do the following: collecting, using and selling non-personal information for any purpose. The lawsuit claims that UnrollMe tries to make customers think they ask for permission to access their inbox. Thus, they mislead users to believe that the company helps them unsubscribe from future mailing lists. However, Cooper points out that the real goal is transferring their personal data to third parties unlawfully.

In response to the complaint, UnrollMe CEO Jojo Hedaya wrote a blog post. Here Hedaya explains that the transferred data is anonymous and refer to purchases. However, he regrets for not providing clearer messaging on their website concerning the service.

 

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