Warriors Must Face Suit Over Eavesdropping App

A New York resident who downloaded an app for the Golden State Warriors can proceed with claims that the basketball team and the beacon technology company Signal 360 violated wiretap laws by eavesdropping on her, a judge ruled Monday.

U.S. District Court Judge Jeffrey White in Oakland, California said in his ruling that the complaint, brought by app user LaTisha Satchell, claimed in sufficient detail that the Warriors and Signal 360 allegedly intercepted her communications.

"Plaintiff cites at least four instances where she had her phone with her, the app was running, and she had conversations about private matters, including non-public information during a business meeting and private financial matters," White writes.

The decision stems from a class-action complaint filed last September by app user LaTisha Satchell. She alleged that the Warriors' mobile app turns on devices' microphones, and then records conversations and other audio whenever it's running, even if people aren't actively using the app.

The app sends offers to fans when they pass concession stands, and notifies users about the possibility of seat upgrades at the team's home stadium in Oakland. To accomplish this, the app tracks users' physical locations via beacons, which transmit audio signals that are picked up by phones' microphones, according to Satchell's complaint.

Satchell, who said she used the app from April through July of 2016, accused the Warriors, YinzCam and Signal360 of violating the wiretap law by intercepting and using her private conversations without consent.

The Warriors argued that Satchell's complaint should be dismissed for several reasons, including that she did not allege in the complaint that anyone ever "learned anything" about the contents of her conversations.

White rejected that argument, writing that the allegations that the Warriors could access information generated by the app were sufficient to warrant further proceedings.

He dismissed the claims against app developer YinzCam, ruling that the allegations didn't show that the company acquired any of Satchell's communications.

White's decision comes two months after a different federal judge refused to dismiss a similar lawsuit against the Indiana Colts, beacon technology company Lisnr and tech company Adept Mobile.

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