Websites Violate Wiretapping Statutes when Spying on Consumers

Websites you regularly or occasionally visit may be monitoring your data without your consent!

Shub & Johns LLC investigates claims that consumer-facing websites are obtaining consumer data without proper consent from the user. Websites may employ data-collecting technologies such as cookies, web beacons, and importantly session replay software that collects data from consumers that visit their website.

Many consumers may find this disturbing, especially if the website does not explicitly state they are collecting this data from its users. Businesses often use the data collected from session replay technologies to “enhance consumer experience” or for “advertising purposes,” and it may boggle the consumer to hear that the company is potentially benefitting from spying on their customers.

If you have visited a website and worry that your information is being collected for the benefit of the company without your consent, let us know! Fill out the attached form today and get in touch with the Shub & Johns team about your worries!

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Websites Violate wiretapping statutes

While session replay software is fairly new, and often used to monitor business interaction and browser information, the novelty and possible scope of the technology may be resulting in violations of state wiretapping statutes.

Almost all states have some form of anti-wiretapping statutes to protect malevolent actors from recording calls with unsuspecting consumers, but more recently wiretapping statutes have been applicable to the way companies and businesses maintain information they collect from consumers online. Many states in the U.S. are still considered One Party Consent states, meaning that only one participating party has to provide consent for the interaction to be recorded. But since technology has made it easier to record these interactions, a few states have adopted Two-Party (Or All-Party) Consent Laws, in which both or all parties must consent for the conversation to be recorded or documented.

Though some have special provisions that vary by case, the Two-Party Consent States include:

  • Connecticut
  • Delaware
  • Illinois
  • Massachusetts
  • Montana
  • Oregon
  • Washington
  • California
  • Florida
  • Maryland
  • Michigan
  • New Hampshire
  • Pennsylvania

What should Consumers be aware of?

Have you ever received ads about a product or service you were just browsing through or receiving email offers to come back to website to view your cart? Websites track what you are doing to help you buy from them. The company potentially markets to you itself or employs a third-party advertiser to show you these ads. But did you provide consent to this?

Consumers should be wary of visiting websites and any pop up windows that indicate a company uses cookies, web beacons, or session replay software to record a user’s browsing habits. Websites’ Terms of Service can also often include indications of using these technologies to collect data. Though many individuals do not explicitly read the terms of service, purchasing from the website may act as consent to the terms of service.

If you browse a website and do not see any indication that the website may be using these technologies, they may collecting data without your consent.

If you live in a two-party consent state and did not explicitly give consent – or was not made aware that the company was collecting this data from you – fill out the attached form, and tell your side of the story to the team at Shub & Johns today!


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