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32 Berkeley Tech. L.J. 503 (2017)
Spokeo, Inc. v. Robins: Determining What Makes an Intangible Harm Concrete

handle is hein.journals/berktech32 and id is 527 raw text is: 













   SPOKEO, INc. v. RoBINS: DETERMINING WHAT

      MAKES AN INTANGIBLE HARM CONCRETE

                             Vanessa K. Ingt


    In 1970, Congress  enacted the Fair Credit Reporting Act  (FCRA)  to
''prevent consumers from being unjustly damaged  because of inaccurate or
arbitrary information in a credit report.' Congress did so in recognition that
there is a need to insure that consumer reporting agencies exercise their
grave  responsibilities with fairness, impartiality, and a respect for the
consumer's  right to privacy.2 Today,  in the Internet Age,  companies,
policymakers, and courts struggle with the scope of the FCRA's application
to the online reporting of consumer data.3
    Spokeo, Inc. v. Robins4 illustrates the struggle to apply the FCRA to
enforce the modern  consumer's  right to privacy. In Spokeo, the plaintiff
brought suit under the FCRA   based on  inaccurate information about him
that was posted  online.' Spokeo also touches on  larger questions in the



       DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.15779/Z38222R597
       C 2017 Vanessa K. Ing.
     t J.D. Candidate, 2018, University of California, Berkeley, School of Law.
     1. S. REP. No. 91-517, at 1 (1969).
     2. Fair Credit Reporting Act, 15 U.S.C. § 1681(a)(4) (2012).
     3. See Natasha Singer, Congress to Examine Data Sellers, N.Y. TIMES (Jul. 24,
2012), http://www.nytimes.com/2012/07/25/technology/congress-opens-inquiry-into-data
-brokers.html [https://perma.cc/UJP3-X3L3]; FTC Warns Data Broker Operations of
Possible Privacy Violations: Letters Issued As Part of Global Privacy Protection Effort,
FTC.GOV  (May  7, 2013), https://www.ftc.gov/news-events/press-releases/2013/05/ftc
-warns-data-broker-operations-possible-privacy-violations  [https://perma.cc/3R4X
-LH5T]; see, e.g., Joe Van Acker, High Court Takes on Spokeo's Challenge to FCRA
Standing, LAW360 (Apr. 27, 2015), https://www.law360.com/articles/648078/high-court
-takes-on-spokeo-s-challenge-to-fcra-standing [https://perma.cc/43A4-RE46]; Spokeo to
Pay $800,000 to Settle FTC Charges Company Allegedly Marketed Information to
Employers and  Recruiters in Violation of FCRA, FTC.GOV  (Jun. 12, 2012),
https://www.ftc.gov/news-events/press-releases/2012/06/spokeo-pay-800000-settle-ftc
-charges-company-allegedly-marketed [https://perma.cc/BU7N-B3JN].
    4.  136 S. Ct. 1540 (2016).
    5. First Amended Complaint for: (1) Violations of the Fair Credit Reporting Act, 15
U.S.C. § 1681e; (2) Violations of the Fair Credit Reporting Act, 15 U.S.C. § 1681b; (3)
Violations of the Fair Credit Reporting Act, 15 U.S.C. § 1681j; (4) Violations of Cal. Bus.
& Prof., Code § 17200 et seq. ¶¶ 30-31, 63-65, Robins v. Spokeo, Inc. No. CV10-05306
ODW   (AGRx), 2011 WL 597867 (C.D. Cal. Sept. 19, 2011) (No. 2:10-cv-5306-ODW-
AGR), 2011 WL 7782796 [hereinafter Robins's Complaint].

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