Sony Hit With Third Class-Action Lawsuit Over Privacy Breach

Sony Pictures Entertainment Studios - H 2014
AP Images

Sony Pictures Entertainment Studios - H 2014

It's officially a class-action parade as yet another complaint — the third this week after others filed on Monday and Tuesday — has been filed against Sony for not doing more to protect employee information such as Social Security numbers, account routing information and medical records from being exposed in the hacking breach.

The lead plaintiffs in the latest lawsuit are Joshua Forster, who says he worked as an associate systems administrator intern in 2013, and Ella Carline Archibeque, who says she had various roles including as a visual effects coordinator from 2002 to 2009. With damages said to be at least $5 million, they are alleging violation of the California Customer Records Act, violation of the Confidentiality of Medical Information Act, negligence, and perhaps most unusually, a violation of the California Unfair Competition Law.

The proposed class action tells a similar story as the ones filed earlier in the week: Sony allegedly failed to implement security measures to ward off the attack, allegedly failed to employ security protocols to detect the hack, and allegedly failed to maintain basic security measures so that stolen data would be unreadable.

"Since the breach SPE has focused its remediation efforts on securing its intellectual property from pirates and a public relations campaign directed at controlling the damage associated with the release of embarrassing internal emails," states the lawsuit filed by Matthew George at Girard Gibbs. "Meanwhile, SPE delayed confirming the data breach for a week and left its employees in the dark about the scope of the breach, how they and their families were impacted, and what steps SPE is taking to remedy or mitigate the breach."

Sony has canceled the release of The Interview, believed to be the impetus behind the attack, but the litigation in its wake is likely to last for years.

Twitter: @eriqgardner