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District Court preliminarily approves $85 million class action privacy settlement

Courts Privacy/Cyber Risk & Data Security Settlement Class Action State Issues

Courts

On October 21, the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California preliminarily approved an $85 million class action settlement to resolve privacy and data security allegations against a video conferencing provider. Class members claimed the company violated several California laws, including invasion of privacy, the “unlawful” and “unfair” prongs under the Unfair Competition Law, implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing, and unjust enrichment, among others. According to class members, the company unlawfully shared their personal data with unauthorized third parties, failed to prevent unwanted and unauthorized meeting disruptions, and misrepresented the strength of its end-to-end encryption measures. The court’s preliminary approval certified a nationwide settlement class of individuals who, between March 30, 2016 and the settlement date, “registered, used, opened or downloaded the [company’s] [m]eetings [a]pplication.” Under the terms of the preliminarily approved settlement, the company will establish an $85 million non-reversionary cash fund to pay valid claims, and will make several major changes to its practices to “improve meeting security, bolster privacy disclosures, and safeguard consumer data.” Among other things, the company will “provide in-meeting notifications to make it easier for users to understand who can see, save and share [their] information and content by alerting users when a meeting host or another participant uses a third-party application during a meeting.” Additionally, the company must educate users about available security features, and ensure its privacy statement discloses the ability of users to share user data with third parties through integrated third-party software, record meetings, and/or transcribe meetings.   

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