Meta Faces New Privacy Lawsuit Over Tracking on Health Websites

Meta Platforms, the company behind Facebook, is in trouble with the law again. This time, a federal judge in California, William Orrick, has agreed that Meta could be breaking privacy laws. The issue is about Meta tracking Facebook users on health care websites.

The case started in May 2022. Facebook users said that Meta was following their visits to hospital websites through something called the Meta Pixel. This is a tool that tells Meta about people visiting these sites. A report found that 33 big hospitals in the US had this tracking tool on their websites.

Meta tried to stop the lawsuit early on. They said that the tracking tool itself isn't illegal. They also said they didn't mean to get sensitive health information. Meta told the people who put the tracking tool on websites not to send health data, and they tried to filter out sensitive info.

In September, Judge Orrick dropped some parts of the lawsuit. But he let the users add more details and try again.

The users came back in October with more specifics about their medical issues. Although the public can't see the details, they were enough for the judge.

Judge Orrick said that the users could move forward with their lawsuit. They said Meta got into their private health info and used it wrongly. Orrick also said they could argue that Meta broke California's computer fraud law. They said Meta put information on their devices without permission, which made the devices slow down. They also said Meta made money from this data.

Now, the users can keep going with their lawsuit against Meta.

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