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Top Class Actions 01-26-2017 (ADT)




By Anne Bucher


January 26, 2017


ADT LLC has agreed to settle five separate class action lawsuits filed by consumers who claim the company misled device owners about the vulnerability of their home security systems to hacking, according to court documents filed this week in California federal court.

If approved, the ADT settlement will resolve similar hacking vulnerability class action lawsuits that were filed by consumers in Arizona, California, Florida and Illinois.

Plaintiff Michael Edenborough initially filed his ADT class action lawsuit in California federal court. He asserted violations of California’s Consumer Legal Remedies Act and Unfair Competition Law. He also claimed ADT concealed material information about the vulnerability of its home security systems to hacking.

U.S. District Judge Jon Tigar dismissed the CLRA and UCL claims from the class action lawsuit, but he allowed the fraudulent omission claim to continue.

ADT continued to fight the home security hacking class action lawsuit, but eventually agreed to a nationwide settlement, the court documents indicate.

Details about the terms of the proposed ADT hacking vulnerability class action settlement were not immediately available.

According to the ADT hacking vulnerability class action lawsuit, Edenborough signed up for ADT services in 2012. At that time, the home security company was aware that its wireless alarm systems lacked encryption and were vulnerable to hacking, Edenborough claims.

To support the allegations in his ADT class action lawsuit, Edenborough pointed to a 2014 Forbes magazine article about a researcher from the Department of Energy who was reportedly able to interfere with ADT’s unencrypted wireless systems that allow alarm sensors to communicate with the alarm system panels.

Judge Tigar rejected ADT’s arguments regarding the unreliability of that study, finding that Edenborough did not need to specify the exact types of vulnerabilities because it was sufficient to allege that ADT was aware of and failed to disclose that its devices were unencrypted and therefore vulnerable to hacking.

The ADT settlement documents indicate that the plaintiffs in four other ADT class action lawsuits have executed a memorandum of understanding that memorializes the fundamental terms of the proposed class action settlement.

Edenborough has asked the judge to grant a stay of the other pending ADT class action lawsuits until the proposed ADT hacking vulnerability class action settlement is approved.

Top Class Actions will post updates to this class action settlement as they become available. For the latest updates, keep checking TopClassActions.com or sign up for our free newsletter. You can also receive notifications when this article is updated by using your free Top Class Actions account and clicking the green “Follow Article” button at the top of the post.

Edenborough is represented by Mark Chavez and Dan Gildor of Chavez & Gertler LLP, Francis J. Balint Jr. and Andrew S. Friedman of Bonnett Fairbourn Friedman & Balint PC, and Tom Zimmerman of Zimmerman Law Offices PC.

The ADT Hacking Vulnerability Class Action Lawsuit is Edenborough v. ADT LLC, Case No. 3:16-cv-02233, in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California.


UPDATE: On March 23, 2017, new details regarding the  ADT settlement were released. According to court documents, ADT will pay $16 million to end the five different class action lawsuits. Class Members are expected to receive $15 or $45 based on when they signed their contract with ADT.



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