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Delta sued in first action under California online privacy law

By Jessica Dye

NEW YORK (Reuters) - California's attorney general office said on Thursday it was suing Delta Air Lines Inc for distributing a mobile application without a privacy policy, the first-ever legal action under the state's online privacy law.

The lawsuit targets Delta's 'Fly Delta' app for smartphones and other electronic devices. The app allows customers to check in online, view reservations and book flights, collecting significant personal data from users, including the user's name, phone number, email and geographic location.

The civil complaint filed in a California state court accuses Delta of distributing the app without a privacy policy since at least 2010, violating the California Online Privacy Protection Act, a 2004 state law.

Delta was given 30 days to conspicuously post a privacy policy telling its Fly Delta app users what information was being collected and how it was being used, but did not, the attorney general's office said.

It added that Delta could face up to $2,500 for each violation of the privacy policy.

Delta could not be immediately reached for comment Thursday evening.

"Losing your personal privacy should not be at the cost of using mobile apps, but all too often is," Attorney General Kamala Harris said in a statement.

"California law is clear that mobile apps collecting personal information need privacy policies, and that the users of those apps deserve to know what is being done with their personal information."

The case is People v. Delta Air Lines Inc., in California Superior Court, San Francisco, 12-526741.

(Editing by Edwina Gibbs)

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