Thursday, August 18, 2022

In Meta Trouble, two lawsuits filed for collecting user data

Two new lawsuits filed against technology company Meta allege that the company collected data from US hospitals without their knowledge.

The claims center around the metapixel that transmits Facebook data on a single click.

A recent report published in Markup found that Pixel was used at 33 of the 100 largest US hospitals. The data that is sent to Facebook includes the IP address, which means that the user or his household can be identified.

In seven of these 33 hospitals, Pixel was installed in password-protected patient portals that provided patients with the name of the drug they were prescribed, information about the allergic reaction they experienced and details about their upcoming doctor’s appointment. Some hospitals removed pixels from these portals after reports of markups.

A lawsuit alleges that medical information sent to Facebook by Pixels was sent from the University of California San Francisco and Dignity Health patient portals. As a result, patients were exposed to advertisements regarding their heart and knee conditions.

According to the US Medical Privacy Act, health care organizations cannot share identifiable information about patients without the patient’s consent.

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