In another class action suit over flash cookie tracking, video entertainment website Metacafe agreed to a settlement barring it from using flash cookies to track users without their consent. Plaintiffs alleged Metacafe used flash cookies to track users and transmit personally identifiable information to third parties, and through the use of those flash cookies, circumvented users’ browser settings (which is where a user normally rejects or deletes cookies). Under the proposed settlement, Metacafe may not use flash cookies (also known as “local shared objects” (LSOs)) to circumvent browser settings or re-spawn HTTP cookies. Further, if Metacafe continues to place LSOs on users’ computers, it must disclose this practice in its privacy policy. The settlement will provide compensation to class members who can demonstrate financial loss attributable to Metacafe, as well as $400,000 in attorneys’ fees.

TIP: Companies should determine if their websites use flash cookies, and if so, should make sure that they have sufficient disclosures about how users can control use of and delete those cookies.