In Two Recent Class Actions, Retailers Get More Clarity On Key Privacy Issues In Song-Beverly Cases - Zip Code O.K., Reverse Lookup O.K., E-mail Address Not Preempted

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The California Court of Appeal has recently published two new decisions involving data privacy class actions. Both involve claims under the Song-Beverly Credit Card Act. The most recent, Jessica Pineda v. Williams-Sonoma Stores, Inc., 2009 DJDAR 15191, affirmed the judgment against the plaintiff on the grounds that it is not a violation of Song-Beverly to request a zip code during a credit card transaction, even if the zip code is matched with a name to acquire that individual's address, and that the same conduct is not a serious invasion of privacy where the home address information is publicly available and plaintiff has taken no special steps to protect it. Approximately one month earlier, the same panel held in Susan Powers v. Pottery Barn Inc., (2009) 177 Cal.App.4th 1039, that the federal CAN-SPAM Act does not preempt a Song-Beverly claim based on a request for an email address, and sent the case back to the trial court for further proceedings.

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