Collection agency sued for cyberbully tactics

“Plaintiffs in three states have recently filed privacy lawsuits over what may be a new form of cyber-bullying -– using the Internet to harass debtors, in one case even creating a website in the debtor’s name…

Jennifer Dicks’s troubles began when she missed payments on a Chevrolet Cavalier she had bought from AFN. According to a complaint filed April 24, the lender used a hidden GPS device to locate the car and repossess it in January.

Dicks then made a payment to regain possession but after she again missed a payment, AFN allegedly created a website with the domain name “” The site’s content is identical to that of AFN’s website ( except for the heading, which states, “Jennifer Dicks isn’t paying for her Cavalier!””

“In one of the MySpace cases, a Michigan auto lender hired Assets Recovered to collect overdue payments on a 2005 Chevrolet Impala from Paula Newland of Edwardsburg, Mich. The collection agency’s methods allegedly included “Posting information regarding Plaintiff’s indebtedness on Plaintiff’s ‘MySpace’ page” and “Using or threatening to use a ‘shame automobile’ and ‘camp out all weekend’ in front of Plaintiff’s house.”

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