Pomerantz LLP announces that a class action lawsuit has been filed against Alphabet, Inc. (“Alphabet” or the “Company”) and certain of its officers. The class action, filed in United States District Court, Northern District of California, and index under 18-cv-06245, is on behalf of a class consisting of all persons and entities, other than Defendants and their affiliates, who purchased or otherwise acquired common shares of Alphabet between April 23, 2018 and October 7, 2018, both dates inclusive (the “Class Period”). Plaintiff seeks to recover compensable damages caused by Defendants’ violations of the federal securities laws and to pursue remedies under Sections 10(b) and 20(a) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (the “Exchange Act”) and Rule 10b-5 promulgated thereunder.
If you are a shareholder who purchased Alphabet securities between April 23, 2018, and October 7, 2018, both dates inclusive, you have until December 10, 2018, to ask the Court to appoint you as Lead Plaintiff for the class. A copy of the Complaint can be obtained at www.pomerantzlaw.com. To discuss this action, contact Robert S. Willoughby at email@example.com or 888.476.6529 (or 888.4-POMLAW), toll-free, Ext. 9980. Those who inquire by e-mail are encouraged to include their mailing address, telephone number, and the number of shares purchased.
Alphabet was incorporated in 2015 and is the parent company of its leading subsidiary Google Inc. (“Google”), among others. Google was founded in 1998. Alphabet and Google are headquartered in Mountain View, California.
Alphabet, through its subsidiary Google, operates a social networking website called “Google+” that allows people to communicate with their family, friends, and coworkers. Google+ users ostensibly have the ability to share and restrict the sharing of personal information according to their preferences by changing privacy settings.
Between 2015 and March 2018, a software glitch in the Google+ website permitted outside developers to access the personal profile data of Google+ members who had not opted to permit their data to be shared publicly. Defendants discovered this glitch in March 2018, ran tests to determine the impact of the glitch, and determined that the data of nearly half of a million users had been exposed to third parties. Google’s legal and policy staff drafted a memorandum regarding the security failure and shared it with senior executives. The memorandum warned that disclosing the incident would likely trigger “immediate regulatory interest.” Google’s CEO, Defendant Pichai, was briefed on the plan not to notify users after an internal committee had reached that decision.
Throughout the Class Period, Defendants made materially false and misleading statements regarding the Company’s business, operational and compliance policies. Specifically, Defendants made false and/or misleading statements and/or failed to disclose that: (1) the Company’s security measures had failed recently and massively, as Google had exposed the private data of hundreds of thousands of users of Google+ to third parties; (2) damage to the Company’s reputation and operating results and loss of customers from this failure of the Company’s security measures were imminent and inevitable; (3) the Company’s security protections did not shield personal user data against theft and security breaches; and (4) the Company’s security measures had been breached due to employee error, malfeasance, system errors or vulnerabilities.
On October 8, 2018, citing “people briefed on the incident and documents reviewed,” The Wall Street Journal reported that in March 2018, Google discovered a software glitch in its Google+ social network that had exposed users’ personal data to third parties, but “opted not to disclose the issue. . . in part because of fears that doing so would draw regulatory scrutiny and cause reputational damage.” Following this news, Google’s stock price fell $67.75 per share, or 5.9%, over the following two trading sessions, to close at $1,081.22 per share on October 10, 2018.