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October 2009

How to avoid Internet liability lawsuits

Businesses are facing new risks and increasing liabilities related to their Internet presence and use of the Internet. A decade ago the focus was on Internet privacy issues, but the spotlight has shifted to Internet liabilities and high-profile lawsuits are commonplace. Take Cecilia I. Barnes vs. Yahoo! Inc. In that case, a federal appeals court ruled in favor of the plaintiff, finding that the ISP failed to remove offensive material provided by a third party. Delta Airlines, eBay, iVillage and Ticketmaster are other prominent defendants in cyber lawsuits. Many lesser known organizations also have faced cyber lawsuits, or are vulnerable to one. Understanding the risks associated with the Internet is no longer a necessity solely for ISPs, big business or e-commerce sites. All organizations must become knowledgeable about their cyber exposures and take steps to implement a sound cyber risk management plan. This is especially true now as many Internet liability lawsuits seek class-action status, raising the stakes even higher. ...

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