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  • Class Action Case Against Coke Moves Ahead In Court

    A Pennsylvania federal judge has allowed a data breach class action lawsuit against Coca-Cola to proceed to the next phase of the trial.

    The case, Enslin v. The Coca-Cola Company, et al, is the first case in which a federal court in Pennsylvania allowed a data breach class action to move beyond the motion to dismiss stage. Previous federal courts found other plaintiffs lacked the necessary standing to sue.

    The case stems from an incident that occurred at the company’s distribution center in Atlanta, GA.

    On Dec. 10, 2013, Coca-Cola discovered that 55 laptops were stolen between 2007 and 2013. The laptops, which were unencrypted, contained the personal information of 74,000 current and former employees of the Coca-Cola Company and six related entities.

    Social Security numbers, financial information, driver’s license information, and other sensitive data were stored on the laptops.

    In the complaint, Shane Enslin, a former service technician for Coca-Cola, alleged that Coca-Cola did not take the proper steps to protect his information and as a result, his finances were accessed and abused without his authorization.

    In allowing the case to proceed, U.S. District Judge Joseph F. Leeson Jr. found Enslin “has already suffered palpable harm, including the alleged theft of funds from his bank accounts on two occasions.”

    Additional allegations listed in the complaint include charges of conspiracy, misrepresentation, and fraud.

    Coca-Cola attempted to rectify the data breach by offering the affected employees a credit monitoring service, paid for by the company for one year.

    Follow Steve Ambrose on Twitter

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