USA: Users sue Twitter for violating privacy laws by allegedly intercepting & reading direct messages

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15 September 2015

Twitter Hit With Suit Claiming It Snoops on Direct Messages

Author: Yoree Koh, Wall Street Journal (USA)

…A lawsuit seeking class action status alleges that Twitter “surreptitiously eavesdrops on its users’ private direct message communications. As soon as a user sends a direct message, Twitter intercepts, reads and, at times, even alters the message.”…“Twitter’s algorithms will read through the Direct Message, identify the hyperlink, and replace it with its own custom link, thereby sending the person clicking on the link to Twitter’s analytics servers before passing them on to the original linked-to website,”…The lawsuit…alleges that Twitter is doing this to benefit its advertising business…According to the lawsuit, this interference represents a violation of the Electronic Communications Privacy Act and California’s privacy law.  “We believe these claims are meritless and we intend to fight them,” said a Twitter spokesman.  The lawsuit…wants as much as $100 a day for each user whose privacy was violated…

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14 September 2015

Raney, et al. v Twitter, Inc. - Class Action Complaint for Violation of Privacy Laws

Author: Samuel M. Lasser, Rafey S. Balabanian, Alexander T.H. Nguyen & Amir C. Missaghi (Attorneys for plaintiffs)

Plaintiff Wilford Raney brings this Class Action Complaint and Demand for Jury Trial against Defendant Twitter, Inc., to stop its practice of systematically intercepting, reading, and altering the private messages of its users without their knowledge or consent. Plaintiff alleges as follows upon personal knowledge as to himself and his own acts and experiences and, as to all other matters, upon information and belief, including investigation conducted by his attorneys...

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