Consumers Say Bose Headphones Spy on Listeners

Bose wireless headphones are

He immediately registered his product and downloaded the Bose Connect app onto his smartphone to access the headphone's full array of features.

Last month, for instance, a "smart sex toy" maker called We-Vibe agreed to pay around $3.75 million to settle claims its app had illegally collected information about how its customers used the product.

Massachusetts-based headphones and speakers producer, Bose Corp, is facing a lawsuit after being accused of covertly collecting data about its customers through a headphones app and then selling those private details to some data mining companies.

We've attempted to reach out to Bose and to Segment (even though it is not named as a defendant in the lawsuit) for comment and will update if we receive any response.

Many electronics vendors track consumer data in aggregate to better serve their needs, often using third-party firms like Segment.io to collect the data and crunch the numbers.

A class action lawsuit accuses Bose Corp. of breaking a federal wiretapping law by keeping tabs on customers' listening habits without their permission.

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Zak and his lawyer didn't specify the exact amount of damages they are seeking but said "the amount in controversy exceeds $5,000,000", excluding other judicial and litigation costs.

"One's personal audio selections - including music, radio broadcast, Podcast, and lecture choices - provide an incredible amount of insight into his or her personality, behavior, political views, and personal identity", the complaint states.

The lawsuit says that tracking a user's listening habits could enable Bose to create "detailed profiles" of its users, since it can collect their names and email addresses during signup, and tie that information to a product's serial number as well. Zak now wants to stop the data collection by Bose Corp, which he says violates the USA federal Wiretap Act and IL laws against eavesdropping and consumer fraud. "For example, a person that listens to Muslim prayer services through his headphones or speakers is very likely a Muslim, a person that listens to the Ashamed, Confused, And In the Closet Podcast is very likely a homosexual in need of a support system, and a person that listens to The Body's HIV/AIDS Podcast is very likely an individual that has been diagnosed and is living with HIV or AIDS", the complaint reads.

Zak is seeking a jury trial and a class action status.

In addition, Zak alleged that the Connect app also "intercepted and collected all available Media Information" from his smartphone every time it was opened, after Zak paired the app with his QuietComfort 35 headphones.

As Reuters report, a lawsuit was filed in Chicago's federal court today by Kyle Zak, who purchased a pair of Bose QuietComfort 35 headphones for $350. Dore said Bose is the first headphone company Edelson has found to collect such data.

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