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Sex Toy Company to Pay $4M in Lawsuit Over Privacy, Hacking Concerns

Image: Sex Toy Company to Pay $4M in Lawsuit Over Privacy, Hacking Concerns
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By    |   Tuesday, 14 Mar 2017 11:48 AM

Sex toy owners could receive up to $10,000 each after a class-action lawsuit claimed that We-Vibe breached customers’ privacy and was vulnerable to hacking.

We-Vibe had reportedly been shipping “smart vibrators” to its customers, but the devices were tracking owners’ use of the toy without their consent, according to The Guardian.

An Illinois woman, sued We-Vibe’s parent company, Standard Innovation, in a lawsuit that was settled in an Illinois federal court last week.

Standard Innovation will pay owners of the device a total of $4 million, as a result of the settlement, with individuals getting as much as $10,000. Those who purchased the sex toy, but haven’t used it yet, can claim up to $199, The Guardian noted.

The We-Vibe vibrator comes with an accompanying app, We-Connect, which allows users to operate the device remotely, according to the Market Watch. Users can even customize the experience by tailoring the vibrators’ features to fit their sexual preference.

The parent company had been secretly collecting this information, gaining insight into its customers’ intimate lives by having access to how each consumer was using the device and app.

The lawsuit claims that the We-Connect app was collecting dates and times of when the devices were being used. Customers’ personal email addresses were also going to the company’s server without them having knowledge of it.

According to The Guardian, the app’s security is questionable, with some expressing concern that the device could be controlled by anyone within Bluetooth range of the device.

Some of these issues involving the sex toy were first discussed at the Def Con hacking conference in Las Vegas in 2016.

At the conference, New Zealand-based hackers, “goldfisk” and “follower,” said the problem with the We-Vibe device and the We-Connect app was a “serious issue,” adding that the “unwanted activation of a vibrator is potentially sexual assault,” The Guardian noted.

Standard Innovation issued a statement saying they were “pleased to have reached a fair and reasonable settlement in this matter,” the Market Watch noted.

“At Standard Innovation we take customer privacy and data security seriously. We have enhanced our privacy notice, increased app security, provided customers more choice in the data they share, and we continue to work with leading privacy and security experts to enhance the app,” the statement said. “With this settlement, Standard Innovation can continue to focus on making new, innovative products for our customers.”

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Sex toy owners could receive up to $10,000 each after a class-action lawsuit claimed that We-Vibe breached customers' privacy and was vulnerable to hacking.
sex, toy, lawsuit, privacy, hacking
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2017-48-14
Tuesday, 14 Mar 2017 11:48 AM
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