The lawsuit follows revelations earlier this year that company logged text messages and phone calls via its Android apps without explicitly notifying users they were doing so. Apple iPhone users were unaffected as iOS does not allow apps to scrape call and text log data. The class-action lawsuit alleges that Facebook’s actions violate privacy and competition laws, reports the Guardian. The lawsuit was brought in the northern district of California, Facebook’s hometown area, and states that the company’s action “presents several wrongs, including a consumer bait-and-switch, an invasion of privacy, wrongful monitoring of minors, and potential attacks on privileged communications.” It goes on to say:
“The terms of service and privacy notice materials do not inform (and in the past have not informed) the ordinary and reasonably attentive Facebook user that installing the application on a mobile device will result in the logging of all the user’s phone and text communications–including recipients, dates of communication, length of communication and mode of communication–on Facebook’s servers for Facebook’s own use . . .
“By granting this access, Android users were also automatically and unknowingly granting Facebook permission to ‘scrape,’ or automatically gather, Android users’ call and text logs. In other words, Facebook scraped years’ worth of call and text data, including whether the call was ‘incoming,’ ‘outgoing,’ or ‘missed’; the data and time of each call; the number dialed; the individual called; and the duration of each call.”
The plaintiff is seeking $5 million in damages and class-action status across the U.S.