LinkedIn password breach lawsuit dismissed by judge

LinkedIn, the world’s biggest business-focused social network has seen a lawsuit related to the June 2012 hacking of its web site resolutely overturned in a San Jose federal court.

The incident resulted in the release of 6.5 million passwords, causing the Mountain View-based company, in a speedy response to the incident, to instruct some of its members to reset their passwords. Two members, Katie Szpyrka of Illinois and Khalilah Wright of Virginia filed a lawsuit within days of the attack. The basis of the action was that LinkedIn had failed to adhere to the guidelines of its own privacy policy and was therefore in violation of California consumer protection laws.

However, the case was dismissed by U.S. District Judge Edward J. Davila when it came before him this week. According to the  order granting the defendant’s motion to dismiss, the plaintiffs had failed to read the privacy policy which the allege to have been transgressed and, according to Bloomberg, they did not demonstrate a “causal connection” between LinkedIn’s alleged misrepresentation and their harm. The order further stated:

“Because plaintiffs take issue with the way in which LinkedIn performed the security services, they must allege something more than pure economic harm. This could be a harm that occurred as a result of the deficient security services and security breach, such as, for example, theft of their personally identifiable information.”

LinkedIn is the world’s most popular business-focused social networking site and has seen spectacular growth since its founding in 2002. The company has beaten earnings forecasts for seven consecutive quarters and its stock price sit at an all-time high.

Author Rob Waugh, We Live Security

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