A class-action lawsuit was filed on Tuesday against Bose, a high-end audio equipment manufacturer, for allegedly spying on customers’ information without their knowledge. The lawsuit was filed in the Eastern Division of the Northern District of Illinois.

Kyle Zak, the person who filed the Case, bought a pair of wireless Bose headphones for $350 last month. Zak registered the headphones, which is the QuitComfort 35, along with his company name, email address, and the device’s serial number. He also downloaded an app called Bose Connect, which supposedly make the headphones more useful with the ability to customize the level of noise cancellation.

The headphones allegedly collect user data

Zak claims that Bose Connect collected information about his use of the device, such as music and audio choices, without his knowledge. However, the app not only receives information according to the complaint, but it was also selling the information to third parties such as a data mining company called Segment.io. This was discovered through research by Edelson, the law firm that represents Zak.

According to a report by USA Today, an excerpt from the complaint stated, “Though the data collected from its customers’ smartphones is undoubtedly valuable to the company, Defendant’s conduct demonstrates a wholesale disregard for consumer privacy right and violates numerous state and federal laws.”

The plaintiff is demanding Bose to stop collecting and sharing User Data as well as financial damages.

Similar spying devices

There was a similar case where a smart device was accused of sharing and selling user data without the customers’ consent. Vizio, the television manufacturer, was also charged with the same allegation and has settled with the Federal Trade Commission in February.

John Verdi, vice president of policy at the Future of Privacy Forum, explained that it is important for companies to be upfront and honest about the data use policies.

The popularity of wireless headphones

Sales of wireless headphones have increased over the years compared to non-wireless devices. Companies such as Apple decided to remove its headphone jack from its smartphones because of this growing trend of Bluetooth devices.

Moreover, wireless headphone makers also offer an accompanying app for their products that offers additional features for the users.

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