A class action lawsuit filed in the Northern District of California alleges MyLife.com is nothing more than a scam that falsely tells potential users that others are searching for them in order to gain access to their bank accounts and online address books.
The plaintiffs allege violations of the Consumer Legal Remedies Act and the Unfair Competition Law, and that the company has engaged in unlawful business practices and enjoyed unjust enrichment.
According to the complaint (PDF), the alleged scam works like this: individuals are informed that someone is looking for them, and they are offered a $5 trial subscription to find out who that person is and get back in touch. Instead, plaintiffs aver, the victims’ credit cards are charged $60 or more and billed monthly thereafter, and the company provides a “list of fake names of people supposedly ‘searching for you,’ together with access to a worthless website that is of no conceivable value to anyone.” Victims are also billed if they choose to cancel, alleges the complaint.
Moreover, the complaint says, the scam also reaches into the online address books of victims, searching for new potential targets among those contacts.
Specifically, the complaint states that MyLife.com’s CEO Jeffrey Tinsley, a self-proclaimed “serial internet entrepreneur . . . has been running essentially the same spam-and-scam operations since at least 2002, when he founded the company under the name Reunion.com. The company later operated using the names Wink.com and Classmates.com, before taking on its latest alias, MyLife.com, in February 2009. False solicitations that ‘someone’ is looking for you have been the core of the business plan for these entities for some time.”
Last year, a similar lawsuit brought against Classmates.com was settled for $9.5 million; the current plaintiffs allege that “the company was re-branded MyLife.com,” continuing “essentially the same business plan, and the same false solicitations that ‘someone’ is trying to contact you.”
The plaintiffs in the action are seeking injunctive relief to stop MyLIfe.com from continuing alleged illegal practices, restitution of wrongfully obtained funds, disgorgement of “all ill-gotten revenues and/or profits,” and damages.