Warner Music Group was hit with a proposed class-action lawsuit Thursday over its alleged failure to reasonably safeguard the personal information of online customers.
The 91-page complaint, filed in Los Angeles federal court, alleges unauthorized parties were able to execute a prolonged data breach that affected Warner’s thousands of websites from roughly April 25 through Aug. 5 due to the major record label conglomerate’s violation of its “duty to implement and maintain reasonable security procedures and practices” in protecting its online payment systems.
A WMG spokesperson could not immediately be reached for comment.
According to the plaintiff, Crescent City resident Linda Stevens, Warner became aware in August that an unauthorized party had possibly gained access to the personal information provided by customers when making online purchases. On or about Sept. 2, Warner disclosed the breach to a number of state attorneys general, and mailed a document titled “Notice of Data Breach” to customers, the suit says.
Though the company said in its notice that it could not definitively confirm that a customer’s personal information was affected, the company conceded “it is possible that it might have been as your transaction(s) occurred during the period of the compromise.”
During August, Stevens — who gave her personal information to Warner when making a purchase on the company’s e-commerce website — says she was alerted to a series of at least eight unfamiliar, unauthorized charges to her bank credit card. As a result of the data breach and the unauthorized credit card transactions, she was compelled to independently utilize a credit monitoring service, according to the complaint.
The exposure of her personal information “as a result of the WMG data breach has caused and placed her at imminent, immediate and continuing risk of financial harm and identity theft,” the suit alleges.
Warner owns and operates some of the largest and most renowned labels in the world, including Warner Records, Atlantic Records, Elektra Records and Rhino Entertainment. WMG also owns Warner Chappell Music, one of the world’s largest music publishers. The WMG conglomerate also operates a number of e-commerce websites from which customers may purchase artist merchandise, records, and other music and entertainment paraphernalia.
The suit aims to cover anyone who used their credit, debit or prepaid debit card on a website operated by Warner Music Group during the period of April 25 to Aug. 5.
The plaintiff is seeking a court order compelling Warner to use appropriate cybersecurity methods and policies regarding the collection, storage, protection and disposal of personal data, an award of compensatory and punitive damages, attorneys’ fees and litigation expenses, and any other relief the court deems appropriate.
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