Facebook Game Developer Hit With Class Action Lawsuit

The developer of some of Facebook's most popular games is the target of a class-action lawsuit that charges the company with sharing users' personal data.

The suit, filed in U.S. District Court in San Francisco, is the latest fallout from the news earlier this week that some popular Facebook applications have leaked personal information to Internet advertisers.

The lawsuit charges that game developer Zynga shared data of about 218 million users with advertisers and Internet tracking firms in violation of federal law and its contract with Facebook. Zynga makes six of Facebook's top 10 games, including the highly popular FarmVille game.

The suit was brought by St. Paul, Minn., resident Nancy Graf. Along with seeking unspecified monetary relief for users whose data was shared, the suit also asks the court to issue an injunction to halt the alleged data-sharing "abuses."

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News of the lawsuit was first reported Tuesday in a story in PC Magazine. Zynga issued a statement saying the lawsuit was without merit and the company would contest the legal action.

Next: Facebook's Commitment To Data Protection

On Sunday The Wall Street Journal published a story that said some of the Facebook game applications reviewed by the Journal sent Facebook user ID numbers to at least 25 advertising and Internet tracking companies. Those numbers could be used to create profiles of users and track their online activities.

The Journal article and the lawsuit come as Facebook faces continued scrutiny over how well it protects its users' personal data.