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Zynga In Class-Action Suit Over Privacy Breach

Zynga In Class-Action Suit Over Privacy Breach

October 20, 2010 | By Leigh Alexander

October 20, 2010 | By Leigh Alexander
More: Console/PC

The Facebook privacy breach uncovered earlier this week has led to a lawsuit. A class-action lawsuit has been filed against social gaming giant Zynga, accusing it of deliberately sharing users' personal data.

Nancy Graf of St. Paul, Minnesota filed the suit against the FarmVille developer in San Francisco federal court, seeking monetary relief for users whose data was improperly shared, plus an injunction to prevent further such "abuses", according to a report in PC Magazine.

Earlier this week, the Wall Street Journal reported that Facebook allowed its partners, including gaming companies that offer their social games on the service, access to user IDs and other data that in some cases was allegedly improperly transmitted.

Apps reviewed by the Journal's report were found to be sending Facebook ID numbers to at least 25 advertising and data firms, several of which build profiles of Internet users by tracking their online activities.

Social gaming company LOLapps (Gift Creator, Quiz Creator) had its titles suspended in the snafu, although they were quickly restored thereafter. The company said the security breach was not due to intentions of its own, but "because of the technical details of how browsers work."

In a statement to media outlets, Zynga said: "We believe that the complaint is without merit and we intend to defend against it vigorously."

The class-action suit's co-lead attorney, Edelson McGuire LLC's Michael Aschenbrener, called the privacy breach "another example of an online company failing the American public with empty promises to respect individual privacy rights."

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