Cases & Deals

Experian obtains complete dismissal of data privacy consumer class action concerning alleged data breach into third-party analytics firm

Client(s) Experian Information Solutions, Inc.

On behalf of Experian Information Solutions, Inc., Jones Day obtained complete dismissal of a putative class action arising from an alleged data breach of a third-party data analytics firm that maintained certain Experian marketing data. In the fourth iteration of their complaint, the plaintiffs alleged that Experian violated the Fair Credit Reporting Act ("FCRA") by failing to disclose to certain categories of information, including (1) so-called "behavioral data"; (2) information regarding various alleged inquiries from third parties concerning plaintiffs; and (3) the dates third parties allegedly reported employment information to Experian. Experian moved to dismiss all plaintiffs' claims, arguing that the plaintiffs lacked Article III standing to pursue their claims in federal court. Experian also moved for judgment on the pleadings, as plaintiffs had failed to sufficiently plead facts to support any of their claims.

In a detailed ruling, the Hon. James V. Selna of the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California adopted virtually all of Experian’s standing arguments, agreeing that plaintiffs had failed to allege a concrete injury or material risk of injury sufficient to confer Article III standing. Applying the Supreme Court's decision in Spokeo and its progeny, Judge Selna reasoned that plaintiffs' claim that they could not completely asses their own information due to omissions in their consumer disclosures is not sufficiently concrete to confer standing, particularly since plaintiffs did not allege that any of the information that Experian purportedly failed to disclose was inaccurate, much less that such inaccurate information had been used by any third party in making any adverse credit, employment, or other decision. The Court also dismissed plaintiffs' claim that Experian violated the FCRA’s accuracy provision as to consumer reports, since the plaintiffs failed to identify any inaccurate information that Experian disclosed or failed to disclose. Final judgment was subsequently entered in Experian’s favor.

Carson v. Experian Information Solutions, Inc., No. 8:17-cv-02232-JVS-KES (C.D. Cal.)