updated 02:54 pm EST, Mon February 4, 2013
Companies can require addresses, phone numbers in California
Apple and other online retailers aren't breaking state law by requiring people to submit their address and phone number when making credit card payments, the California Supreme Court has ruled. The decision at least temporarily ends a proposed class action brought by David Krescent, who charged that Apple should not be able to require the extra information for iTunes purchases. Reuters reports that eBay and Walmart submitted briefs in support of Apple.
The verdict was split, however. Three dissenting justices wrote that the ruling is "a major win for these sellers, but a major loss for consumers, who in their online activities already face an ever-increasing encroachment upon their privacy." The four who ruled against Krescent have responded by stating that "These ominous assertions, though eye-catching, do not withstand scrutiny."
Requiring addresses and phone numbers is relatively standard with online credit card transactions. It isn't strictly necessary though, and people have complained that companies use the information for demographics and advertising, or sometimes as something they can sell to third-party marketers.