Saturday, 15 December, 2018

Data breach victims can sue Yahoo in the U.S., rules judge

Yahoo sign Data breach victims can sue Yahoo in the U.S., rules judge
Russell Knight | 13 March, 2018, 05:49

Victims of Yahoo's data breach can sue the company, a federal judge ruled.

California judge Lucy Koh rejected a bid by Verizon, which bought the internet giant past year, to dismiss a large portion of the claims, including breach of contract, deceit and concealment, and negligence. Yahoo! would eventually fess up to the breach in 2016, but only after it had already agreed to an acquisition deal with Verizon that would lump Yahoo! in with Aol as part of a new company called "Oath".

Additionally, Koh granted a motion to dismiss claims made under the California Customer Records Act, and claims of breach of implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing.

Among the suits were claims alleging negligence and breach of contract.

Koh said the amended complaint highlighted the importance of security in the plaintiffs' decision to use Yahoo.

The first hack occurred in 2013, when Yahoo used an encryption technology that was widely acknowledged within the data-security industry to be outdated and inadequate. While Yahoo initially revealed a 1 billion account attack, it later tripled that estimate.

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In 2016, the last hack used the forged-cookie technique. Hackers forged cookies through which users unwittingly gave hackers prolonged access to vulnerable data. Users argued the breach cost them money by requiring the purchase of identity-theft prevention services and that Yahoo should have disclosed the breach sooner.

Several of the other plaintiffs experienced similar issues. They say Yahoo's failure to promptly disclose the depth and breadth of the hack created direct financial harm. A USA district judge ruled that victims of the Yahoo data breach will be able to sue the company.

In her 48-page decision (PDF), Koh found that while parts of the complaint stood up to scrutiny, plaintiffs will have to show they actually suffered damages or losses.

One accused hacker, Karim Baratov, a Canadian born in Kazakhstan, pleaded guilty in November to aggravated identity theft and conspiracy charges.

Three other suspects, Dmitry Aleksandrovich Dokuchaev, Igor Anatolyevich Sushchin and Alexsey Alexseyevich Belan, remain at large in Russian Federation, according to the U.S. Department of Justice.

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