Tech: Lawyer Suing Facebook Overwhelmed With Support

A lawyer planning to sue Facebook in a class action over online privacy has limited the number of plaintiffs to 25,000 after he was overwhelmed with support, reports says. Campaigner and lawyer Max Schrems has accused Facebook Ireland – the Irish subsidiary of the website - of breaching European data laws, and violating users’ rights by tracking internet activity on external sites, including the use of “like” buttons.

The lawsuit, organised via Mr Schrem's, also questions how Facebook analyses users through what it calls “big data” systems. Mr Schrems claims the company supports the US secret service’s Prism surveillance exposed by whistleblower Edward Snowden.

The law suit, which is being launched against the New York-listed 1.3 billion user-strong social media giant, could be the largest class and privacy action ever taken.

Mr Schrems is restricting the case to 25,000 people so each Facebook account can be verified. But he will continue to register the information of users who wish to join the action, who will be prioritised if the claim is expanded.

Up to 7,000 users a day from more than 100 countries have registered their support for Schrems's David v Goliath legal challenge, which will take place in Austrian courts.

Mr Schrems hopes to claim damages of €500 euros (£397) per supporter.

Last Friday, the number of people signing up peaked as a new user joined every six seconds.

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