W&L has announced the filing of a class action lawsuit against Lenovo and Superfish for a recent case of laptop security failings. The suit was filed in response to the growing concern over computer manufacturer Lenovo’s inclusion of Superfish malware on laptops purchased after Sept. 1, 2014.
In January 2015, a security expert discovered that Superfish’s VisualDiscovery software had been installed on Lenovo laptops before they were shipped out to customers. This software has security defects that endanger all communications made on the affected laptops.
According to published reports, more than just a few models are affected. Laptops purchased after Sept. 1, 2014 and during Feb. 2015 may all contain this damaging software. The models containing Superfish include the Lenovo G, U, Y, Z, S, Flex, MIIX, YOGA, and E series.
As Robin L. Greenwald, head of Weitz & Luxenberg’s Environmental, Toxic Tort & Consumer Protection Unit explained, “Lenovo sold you a laptop that you thought you could trust to protect confidential internet communications. But Lenovo didn’t care about your security; instead, it cared about exploiting you and helping advertisers promote their products. By doing so, Lenovo and Superfish exposed you to a serious security risk.”
How Superfish Causes a Security Risk
It has been announced in news reports that hackers can use Wi-Fi networks, which are found across the U.S. in many public places — including coffeeshops, restaurants and bars — to hack into your computer. The Superfish software is what allows them in, according to Weitz & Luxenberg.
Once these thieves access your computer, they can capture any data you have stored on it. This gives them possible access to your passwords, bank account numbers, tax records and any other private information, according to industry reports.
The hackers then can use the information themselves to open credit card or cell phone accounts in your name, file false tax returns in your name, or sell your information on the black market to others who will do so.
Christopher Dalbey, an attorney with Weitz & Luxenberg, explained, “Lenovo’s actions are also reprehensible because it installed software that allows hackers to easily mimic the look and feel of other companies’ secure websites.”
Dalbey emphasized, “You think that you’re visiting a website for your bank, but instead the software tricks you into giving up personal and private information. And that software is installed on your own computer by a manufacturer you trusted.”
Lenovo explained the inclusion of this malware as an attempt to improve the advertising experience for its customers. The company claimed not to have realized that the software gives Superfish access to all of a customer’s online communications and enables hackers to easily spy on customers, according to news outlets.
Join Our Class Action Against Lenovo
The attorneys at W&L believe that you have certain privacy rights that are safeguarded by federal and state laws. These include the federal wiretapping statute and state laws about deceptive trade practices, breach of implied warranty and fraudulent concealment. And at least one state has an anti-spyware law.
The firm believes that the evidence indicates that Lenovo knowingly violated those rights. Therefore, both Lenovo and Superfish should be held accountable and people who have been damaged should receive compensation.
W&L invites anyone who has purchased a Lenovo laptop during this time period to reach out to us to discuss joining our class action lawsuit.
“Lenovo put your security and privacy at risk, and you deserve to be compensated for that,” affirms Ms. Greenwald. “Big corporations must learn that they cannot take advantage of people. And if they do so, they will be held accountable for it.”