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U.S. data breach victims can sue Yahoo
15 March 2018, 03:35 | Kelvin Horton
Yahoo corporate headquarters
The lawsuit accuses Yahoo of failing to disclose to its users a series of three major data breaches that hit the company between 2013 and 2016.
A federal court judge on Friday ruled that a class action lawsuit can move forward against Yahoo over a number of massive data breaches that revealed the personal information of billions of users, Reuters reported.
A Judge has dismissed Verizon's efforts to bar Yahoo customers from being able to sue over the company's multiple, massive security breaches previous year. Koh dismissed some other claims.
While Koh dismissed some claims, the judge denied the dismissal of "many" others, including one for negligence and another for breach of contract.
Over the past year, news of Yahoo's data breaches got progressively worse.
The judge agreed to dismiss claims of violations of California's unfair competition law, but upheld the claim of another plaintiff who had paid for Yahoo's premium email service.
"The claims are baseless, and can't comment beyond that because of pending litigation", said Bob Varettoni, a Verizon spokesman.
Customers make a plausible argument that "high-ranking executives and managers at Yahoo" engaged in "malicious conduct, " the standard for seeking punishment damages on top of ordinary compensation for consumer harm, U.S. District Judge Lucy Koh in San Jose, California, said in a ruling. Lawyers for Yahoo shareholders are requesting $20 million in legal fees.
The plaintiffs amended their complaint after Yahoo last October revealed that the 2013 breach affected all 3 billion users, tripling its earlier estimate.
One accused hacker, Karim Baratov, a Canadian born in Kazakhstan, pleaded guilty in November to aggravated identity theft and conspiracy charges.
"Plaintiffs' allegations are sufficient to show that they would have behaved differently had defendants disclosed the security weaknesses of the Yahoo Mail System", Koh wrote in her decision, which was obtained by International Business Times. The other three have not been apprehended and are believed to be in Russian Federation.
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