Bloomberg News

Microsoft Sued by Woman Saying Company Tracks Phone Location

September 01, 2011

(Updates with name of software in second paragraph.)

Sept. 1 (Bloomberg) -- Microsoft Corp. was sued by a mobile phone user claiming the company illegally tracks location information from mobile devices in violation of state and federal privacy laws.

The company has designed its mobile operating software Windows Phone 7 to track users’ location deceptively even after users choose to disable the feature, according to a complaint filed in federal court in Seattle today. The software is in mobile devices made by Samsung Electronics Co., HTC Corp. and LG Electronics Inc., and transfers the location data to company server computers, the complaint shows.

Michigan resident Rebecca Cousineau filed the lawsuit on behalf of tens of thousands of consumers who use phones with the Microsoft software and had their location data tracked after they disabled the feature. The complaint seeks a court order barring the company from tracking users’ phone locations, $1,000 for each violation, and unspecified punitive damages.

Kevin Kutz, a Microsoft spokesman, didn’t immediately return a voice-mail message seeking comment about the lawsuit.

The case is Cousineau v. Microsoft, 11-1438, U.S. District Court, District of Washington (Seattle).

--Editors: Glenn Holdcraft, David E. Rovella

To contact the reporter on this story: Karen Gullo in San Francisco at kgullo@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Michael Hytha at mhytha@bloomberg.net


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