Cast your mind back to 2013 and 2014 (yes, I know it’s hard), most of us remember the mass scale data breaches that affected Yahoo in these years. First, there was the 2013 breach which impacted over one billion users. Not satisfied with the lack of trust and damage that had caused, Yahoo followed this up with a 2014 breach that affected over 500 million Yahoo accounts.
The breaches exposed emails, passwords and sensitive information of a staggering number of individuals. A number of those individuals banded together to form five class action lawsuits against Yahoo.
Yahoo has been trying to dismiss the lawsuits claiming that the victims do not have a legal standing to bring the case to trial. The judge on the trial, US District Judge Lucy Koh, has outright rejected the request to dismiss and has instead stated: “All plaintiffs have alleged a risk of future identity theft, in addition to the loss of value of their personal identification information.”
There were some claims that Judge Koh dismissed and the judge is giving the plaintiffs the opportunity to make some amendments to the complaint before going to trial.
This is a massive blow for Yahoo (now Verizon, as they own Yahoo) and again reinforces that data breaches are costly. Not just for the potential lawsuits, but the large scale loss of trust with consumers.