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Rite Aid Hit With Class Action for Allegedly Sharing Customer Data With Meta

Lawsuit raises privacy concerns as drug store chain is accused of disclosing health information to 3rd-party platforms without authorization
Marian Zboraj, Progressive Grocer
A class action against Rite Aid alleges that through the tracking tool Meta Pixel, the company disclosed customers’ medical information to Facebook without customers' knowledge and/or consent.

Rite Aid has been hit with a class action in California that alleges the drug store chain disclosed the personal and health information of millions of customers to major website and social media companies without customers’ express consent, according to a Consumer Affairs report.

The lawsuit claims that when consumers visited to make a request for a prescription to be filled using the Manage Prescriptions feature, tracking tools including Meta Pixel – invisible to the user but embedded into the website – “secretly” sent sensitive information to Meta, Google, TikTok and other companies.

[Read more: "Rite Aid Q1 Sees Soft Front End Sales"]

That information supposedly included the person’s name, phone number, email address, birthdate, Rite Aid client ID numbers, services selected, assessment responses, patient statuses, medical conditions, treatments, provider information and appointment information. According to the filing, this data is used by Rite Aid and the third parties it partners with to improve their targeted advertising capabilities.

Rite Aid isn’t the only one facing these type of allegations. The Markup reported last month that 12 of the largest drug stores and food retailers in the United States also sent shoppers’ sensitive health information to Facebook or other platforms.

Meanwhile, the lawsuit against Rite Aid claims that the company violated its own privacy policy promises, the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) and several federal and state statutes by failing to secure website visitors’ permission before tracking and sharing their highly confidential information.

However, the company’s privacy policy does note that “we may otherwise continue to share your personal information with our affiliates and service providers, and as otherwise directed by you, for the purposes described in our policy.” 

Rite Aid declined Progressive Grocer's request to comment as this is a litigation matter.

Employing more than 6,300 pharmacists, Philadelphia-based Rite Aid operates 2,300-plus retail pharmacy locations across 17 states. The company is No. 22 on The PG 100, Progressive Grocer’s 2023 list of the top food and consumables retailers in North America.

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