Court documents indicate the two women who initially filed the lawsuit, Emily Roberts, Jefferson City, and Sarah Smith, El Dorado Springs, will receive $1,500 apiece, while the Kansas City law firm that filed the action, the Ralph Phalen firm, will receive $62,000. Most of the rest of the money will go toward attorneys' expenses.
The proposed settlement would prevent the two companies, The Source for Public Data LP and Shadowsoft.com, both of Dallas, Texas, from using the private information. "It prevents further reselling of the information and greatly reduces the risk of identity theft and the illegal use of such information."
A judge must approve the proposed settlement. The defendants in the lawsuit also included former Blunt administration Department of Revenue Director Trish Vincent and other DOR officials, none of whom are mentioned in the settlement agreement.
The lawsuit says Public Data and Shadowsoft bought the personal information from the DOR and sold it over the internet:
"Prior to February 20, 2008, co-defendant Shadowsoft acquired a large database of information from Mo. DOR on the pretense that the information would be used only for the legitimate business purpose of verifying the accuracy of information of individuals doing business with Shadowsoft.
"The information database acquired by Shadowsoft from Mo. DOR contained “highly restricted personal information”, including social security numbers, belonging to hundreds of thousands of licensed drivers in the State of Missouri.
"Upon information and belief, co-defendant Shadowsoft transferred the database in totum to co-defendant PublicData.
"PublicData then made the highly restricted personal information belonging to those individuals, unlawfully acquired from Mo. DOR, available for search and sale on its website, www.publicdata.com. In many instances, the information acquired by Shadowsoft from Mo. DOR and subsequently sold by PublicData on www.publicdata.com, included social security numbers."