There’s big business in tracking web browsing, and temptation to grab more information than is legally acceptable. A lawsuit alleges a web analytics company and its clients stepped over the line in snooping on browsing habits, particularly of those who try to cover their tracks.
Wired reports the suit (PDF), filed by a group of lawyers in California, alleges the firm and its clients, which include AOL’s About.me and music streaming service Spotify, ran afoul of federal and state privacy laws with their tracking practices. The suit alleges that defendants re-created cookies after users deleted them.
The analytics firm tells Wired it “has never shared any information about a user with any third party, including with any customer other than the one that interacted with that user” and goes on to call its practices “pro-privacy:”
“Our business model is uniquely pro-privacy precisely because our tools enable insights without sharing any user information across websites and without developing or storing user profiles across sites, and that for this reason, (the company) offers key differences from third parties that link up user data across the Internet.”
Spotify says it uses the info to “help us understand customer registration and purchase flow, and to make the process of using our website as easy as possible for users.”