Ohio District Court Allows Database “Scraping” Case To Proceed On A Variety Of Legal Theories


Recent years have seen the growth of online data sources, such as online databases, ecommerce catalogs, and social networking sites, and associated services and applications. This growth has been accompanied by a corresponding increase in the sophistication of technologies that automate access and retrieval of online data, a practice commonly referred to as “scraping.”

The Snap-On Bus. Solutions, Inc. v. O’Neil & Assoc., Inc. case,1 in which the plaintiff alleged a variety of claims that are typical in a scraping case, presents a timely opportunity to review the developing body of case law relating to automated access of third-party systems, including scraping and the use of third-party content. The plaintiff, Snap-On Business Solutions (Snap-On), survived a summary judgment motion and was allowed to proceed to trial on a variety of claims it brought against O’Neil & Associates (O’Neil) in the Northern District of Ohio, in connection with O’Neil’s use of a scraping tool to access and replicate data from an online database built and hosted by Snap-On.

Snap-On initially created the searchable online database at issue for its client Mitsubishi, using data and images provided by Mitsubishi. Mitsubishi later decided to move the database to another service provider (O’Neil), but Snap-On refused to provide the database to Mitsubishi unless Mitsubishi paid an additional fee. Mitsubishi and O’Neil agreed that O’Neil would retrieve the data from Snap-On’s database through the use of O’Neil’s “scraper tool.” O’Neil proceeded to scrape the data from the Snap-On database, simulating logins by Mitsubishi personnel using access credentials supplied by Mitsubishi. After experiencing performance issues with its service, Snap-On became aware of the scraping activity and filed suit.

Please see full alert below for more information.

LOADING PDF: If there are any problems, click here to download the file.

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

© Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati | Attorney Advertising

Written by:


Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati on:

Readers' Choice 2017
Reporters on Deadline

"My best business intelligence, in one easy email…"

Your first step to building a free, personalized, morning email brief covering pertinent authors and topics on JD Supra:

Sign up to create your digest using LinkedIn*

*By using the service, you signify your acceptance of JD Supra's Privacy Policy.

Already signed up? Log in here

*With LinkedIn, you don't need to create a separate login to manage your free JD Supra account, and we can make suggestions based on your needs and interests. We will not post anything on LinkedIn in your name. Or, sign up using your email address.