Fitbit Has Had a Really Bad Week

Company sees lawsuit, security breach, falling stock
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 7, 2016 12:06 PM CST
Fitbit Has Had a Really Bad Week
The Fitbit Surge   (Fitbit via AP)

Fitbit devices may have sold like hotcakes around the holidays, but the company is off to a miserable start in 2016. Just how bad has the past week been? Well, on Tuesday, Fitbit revealed Blaze, its new "smart" fitness watch. Immediately the company's stock fell 18%, reports Fortune. Some on social media say the watch is too big. Others say it's a knockoff of the Apple Watch, per the Verge, which admits it's "not a very attractive watch." Forbes jokes that Fitbit "appears to have shown up to a Swiss Army knife fight with a spork." Also on Tuesday, Fitbit was hit with a class-action lawsuit alleging that heart rate tracking in its Charge HR and Surge devices is way off. One plaintiff says a trainer counted her heart rate at 160 beats per minute, while her Charge HR read only 82 beats per minute.

Fitbit says it "plans to vigorously defend the lawsuit," per the Verge. In the meantime, it's battling a third blow. On Wednesday, news broke that fraudsters had gained entry to Fitbit accounts using leaked email addresses and passwords from third-party sites. BuzzFeed reports at least 24 cases where fraudsters gained access to a user's GPS history, which includes past locations and sleep cycles, and attempted to defraud the company by requesting replacement items under warranties. Fitbit says only a "small proportion" of users were affected, but some tell BuzzFeed that Fitbit blamed them for using the same passwords across multiple sites. Fitbit says it's working on two-step verification for account changes but is "vigilant in identifying, blocking, and addressing this type of malicious nefarious activity." (More Fitbit stories.)

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