Sony BMG sued over embedded spyware

Nov. 22, 2005 at 1:56 PM
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LOS ANGELES, Nov. 22 (UPI) -- Sony BMG has been hit by lawsuits in California and Texas over its copy-protected CDs that install computer files without the owners' knowledge.

Monday's court actions were just the latest headache for Sony, which last week recalled all of its CDs containing the hidden XCP software because the program was exploited to place a virus on some computers.

The suit filed by Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott was the state's first under its Consumer Protection Against Computer Spyware Act of 2005, The Hollywood Reporter said.

"Consumers who purchased a Sony CD thought they were buying music. Instead, they received spyware that can damage a computer, subject it to viruses and expose the consumer to possible identity crime," Abbott said.

The consumer activist group Electronic Frontier Foundation and two national class-action law firms filed a similar suit in Los Angeles, The Reporter said.

The suit accuses Sony of creating "serious security, privacy and consumer protection problems" by placing the "flawed and overreaching computer program in over 20 million music CDs."

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