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8/24/2006
04:44 PM
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AT&T Sues To Stop Data Brokers' Unauthorized Use Of Customer Info

AT&T says it intends "to vigorously pursue these individuals who, through fraud, have attempted to obtain unauthorized access to customer information."

AT&T has filed suit in a federal court to block data brokers from the unauthorized use of telephone records. Two dozen data brokers were cited in the litigation filed in the San Antonio court Wednesday, the telecommunications giant said.

AT&T said the legal action was designed to give it the means to use e-mail addresses and Internet Protocol addresses that will lead to the identity of the data abusers. AT&T said it would then issue injunctions against the violators as well as to seek damages.

"We're taking this action on behalf of our customers," Priscilla Hill-Ardoin, AT&T's chief privacy officer, wrote in a press release. "We intend to vigorously pursue these individuals who, through fraud, have attempted to obtain unauthorized access to customer information."

"This affects only a tiny fraction of our customers. But we will pursue this on behalf of our customers to the end," she wrote.

In the statement, AT&T noted that it is seeking to stop the process called pretexting in which individuals pretend they are AT&T customers to gain confidential information.

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