There is a class action settlement, OPPERMAN, ET AL. v. KONG TECHNOLOGIES, INC., ET AL, that has been between the plaintiffs and an app developer. Kong Technologies created apps for Foodspotting, Foursquare, Gowalla, Instagram, KIK, Twitter, and Yelp. Kong Technologies was formerly known as Path, Inc.. Essentially, certain apps obtained contact data from users’ devices (their iPhones), in violation of their privacy rights. If you used one of these apps in your iPhone between 2009 and 2012 and allowed those apps to access your contacts, you may be entitled to money. You can claim it through iosappsettlement dot com.
More specifically, the litigation alleges that certain versions of the Foodspotting, Foursquare, Gowalla, Instagram, Kik, Path, Twitter, and Yelp apps obtained contact data from users’ iDevices in violation of user’s privacy rights, and that Apple aided and abetted that conduct.
The plaintiffs are Allen Beuershausen, Giuliana Biondi, Lauren Carter, Stephen Dean, Stephanie Cooley, Jason Green, Claire Hodgins, Gentry Hoffman, Rachelle King, Nirali Mandalaywala, Claire Moses, Judy Paul, and Gregory Varner. They are referred to as the “Class Representatives.” The App Developer defendants are Foodspotting, LLC; Foursquare Labs, Inc.; Gowalla, Inc.; Instagram, LLC; Kik Interactive Inc.; Kong Technologies, Inc. (formerly known as Path, Inc.); Twitter, Inc.; and Yelp Inc. They are referred to as the “App Developers.”
So, if you downloaded one of these apps:
during a certain period of time (between 2009 and 2012) and “added friends” based on the contacts listed in your iPhone, you may be a member of the class, and entitled to money. Here are the details:
The Class definitions can be summarized as persons in the United States who:
- (A) used versions 2.5 through 3.1 of the iOS Foodspotting app to “Find iPhone Contacts” between August 9, 2011 and February 19, 2012;
- (B) used versions 1.1 through 4.2 of the iOS Foursquare app between April 4, 2009 and February 14, 2012 (and for some versions used “Add Friends”);
- (C) used versions 1.5.0 through 4.1 of the iOS Gowalla app between February 23, 2010 and February 23, 2012 to “Find Friends” with your “Address Book”;
- (D) used versions 1.0.0 through 2.0.7 of the Instagram app between October 6, 2010 and February 10, 2012 to “Find Friends”;
- (E) used version 5.4.0 of the iOS Kik app and used the “Suggested Friends” feature between December 22, 2011 and February 11, 2012;
- (F) used versions 2.0 through 2.0.5 of the iOS Path app between November 29, 2011 and February 7, 2012;
- (G) used versions 3.3 through 4.0.1 of the iOS Twitter app between March 11, 2011 and February 21, 2012 to “Find Friends”;
- (H) used versions 4.0.0 through 5.6.0 of the iOS Yelp app between January 16, 2010 and February 22, 2012 to “Find Friends.”
There is a website where you can fill out a form and put yourself on the list as a member of the class:
iosappsettlement dot com
If you’re a possible member of the class, then you may get an email with these details. As far as I can tell, this case has been mentioned in the news and is class action settlement. See:
However, in a separate law news article
it’s shown that the judge denied to turn it into a class action. There may have been a settlement, though, since the posting of that article.
Fortune also posted about it:
I am trying to confirm whether or not this is legitimate, as it is sent via email via a qgemail.com email address. For now, as of August 13, 2017, I would wait some time (perhaps a few days) before going to that site iosappsettlement.com and providing any personal information there. I don’t see that domain name indexed in Google, which is odd to me, so I would like to verify this further.
Update: August 13, 2017 It does appear that based on the WHOIS data, that iosappsettlement.com was registered on July 17, 2017, and is currently hosted on computershare.com name servers.
Filing a Claim
If you wish to file a claim, you will need a claim number (get this from the email that you received). Follow the instructions on the iosappsettlement.com website to file a claim. You’ll need to provide your name, mailing address, and email address. I recommend you use the same email address where they emailed you the claim number. You can choose to receive your settlement amount via Amazon gift card or via a check sent via mail. If you opt to receive a check, they will deduct the $.35 cents to mail the check to you. Keep in mind that the amount you receive could be less than $1.00, and that will reduce the check amount even further. Do you want to deposit check for less than $1.00?