Sony Hit With Another Ex-Employees’ Class Action Over ‘Interview’ “Retribution”

Legal trouble is coming as a duo for the hacked apart Sony Pictures. Just one day after the first class action lawsuit from former employees of the studio hit the courts, another was filed today. Unlike the previous complaint, this one from the former production coordinator and production manger on 2004’s Spider-Man 2 is centering its claims on upcoming directly on The Interview as well as Sony digital security.

“The damages sustained by Sony’s current and former employees and associates (“Class Members”) is staggering and cognizable,” says the 4-claim jury seeking complaint from Susan Dukrow and Yvonne Yaconelli (read it here) over the hack that was revealed on November 24.

“Sony knew the risks and repercussions associated with releasing the film. Sony received multiple warnings that retribution for releasing the film was inevitable,” the complaint adds of the upcoming James Franco and  Seth Rogen comedy about an attempted assassination of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. Today, additional threats were made by alleged hackers over the release of the film in theaters on Christmas Day. “Sony moved forward with the film, knowing that by doing so, it created an unreasonable risk for Plaintiffs and Class Members.

Not that the security breach and data dump itself is treated uncritically in this latest lawsuit that seeks a variety of unspecified damages. “As a direct and proximate result of Sony’s breach of its duties, Plaintiffs and Class Members suffered economic damages,” says the 22-page filing in LA Superior Court, first reported by THR. “Plaintiffs and Class Members will have to spend time and money to protect themselves, their credit and their reputations. In addition, Plaintiffs and Class Members will continue to suffer damages because they are at an increased risk of identity theft.”

In terms of liability, with hard to replace social security numbers and other personal data out of over 47,000 past and present Sony employees now made public, among other dumps from the wide-spread hack, Dukrow and Yaconelli’s lawyers at Beverly Hills firm Johnson & Johnson LLP say Sony left everyone vulnerable. “In recent years, on multiple occasions unauthorized individuals successfully accessed Sony’s computer systems,” the filing notes without reference to the massive Playstation hack of 2011 or other Sony specifics. “Recent evidence suggests that, on at least one occasion, Sony failed to provide notification to affected individuals where it was not required by law. On multiple occasions Sony was warned its information security program’s were inadequate to protect the PII they had a duty to secure.”

Seeking classification, this class action alleges violations of the California Data Breach Act, Constitutional invasion of privacy, the California Confidentially of Medical Information Act as well as negligence on the part of Sony. Neville L. Johnson, Douglas L. Johnson and Brian Shippen-Murray are representing the plaintiffs in the class action.

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