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Comscore is accused of collecting personal data

Measurement by spyware
Wed Aug 24 2011, 14:59

INTERNET MEASUREMENT FIRM Comscore has been hit by a lawsuit claiming it nabs private information from unsuspecting users.

Comscore has been accused by two plaintiffs that its software scans all files on the users' computers, modifies security settings and records information such as credit card numbers and passwords. The class action lawsuit seeks an injunction against several alleged practices as well as monetary damages.

Comscore told Reuters that it did not think much of the lawsuit saying, "We have reviewed the lawsuit and find it to be without merit and full of factual inaccuracies. Comscore intends to aggressively defend itself against these claims."

The way Comscore and its rival web analytics firms go about their business has been a hot topic with users finally starting to wise up to the extensive tracking mechanisms some companies put in place. Comscore offers users the chance to win prizes for running its software, which collects data that Comscore then sells on to firms such as Facebook and Microsoft.

In the past Comscore has admitted that its software might record personally identifiable data but the firm claims it takes every effort to purge this information from its database. It said, "Inadvertently, we may collect such information about our panellists; and when this happens, we make commercially viable efforts to purge our database of such information."

For its part, Comscore does mention very clearly that by running its tracking software, all network data is monitored, however it seems that some people are blinded by the chance of winning $100,000. Perhaps Comscore thought people would be willing to sell their privacy for that amount. µ


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