Court rules on private Facebook photos

New York’s high court ruled Tuesday that Facebook users may be required to turn over photos and other information relevant to litigation, even if they are shielded by “privacy” settings.

By a 7-0 vote, the state’s Court of Appeals reinstated a trial judge’s ruling requiring a Manhattan woman who was disabled in a riding accident to turn over to the defendant, a horse owner, photos taken before and after her injuries.

Noting there is “significant controversy” over what Facebook data deserves privacy protection, Chief Judge Janet DiFiore said it is appropriate to require disclosure of materials that are “reasonably calculated” to contain “material and necessary” evidence.

Kelly Forman said she became a recluse after suffering a spinal injury and brain damage in a June 2011 fall after Mark Henkin fitted her horse with a defective stirrup. To defend himself against Forman’s damages claims, Henkin sought access to her entire Facebook account.


Chipotle taps Taco Bell head to be new chief executive

Chipotle Mexican Grill on Tuesday said it had hired Brian Niccol from Yum Brands’s Taco Bell unit as chief executive to turn around the formerly red-hot burrito chain that has been hurt by several food safety lapses.

Shares of Chipotle were up 11 percent at $279 in extended trading. They had hit a high of $742 in 2015, before sales-crushing E.coli, salmonella and norovirus outbreaks sickened hundreds of U.S. customers.

Niccol, who has headed Taco Bell since 2015, replaces Chipotle founder Steve Ells.

Ells said in November he would step aside after failing for two years to rescue the burrito chain’s sales and reputation.

He became sole CEO after co-CEO Monty Moran departed in December 2016, under pressure from hedge fund manager William Ackman, whose Pershing Square Capital Management is Chipotle’s largest investor with a 10 percent stake.


Also in Business

American households’ outstanding debt climbed to an all-time high of $13.1 trillion in the October-December period, according to data released Tuesday by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. It marked the fourth straight quarter in which borrowing hit a record. Debt balances rose from the previous quarter in nearly all categories, including a 3.2 percent gain in credit-card borrowing. The report said 7.55 percent of credit-card balances were in serious delinquency — 90 days or more past due. The 4.05 percent delinquent share of car loans was the biggest since 2012.

Delta Air Lines wants to be one of the first to fly a potential new mid-sized jetliner from Boeing, Delta chief executive Ed Bastian told employees Tuesday. That's a vote of confidence as Boeing decides whether to build the jet, dubbed the 797 by analysts, as a potential replacement for Delta's aging fleet of Boeing 757s and 767s on long domestic routes and midrange international flights.

Barnes & Noble has new staffing rules that will allow stores to increase or decrease the number of people on the clock depending on need. The nation's largest book chain said Tuesday in a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission that the change will save $40 million in annual costs. The company insists the staff cuts will not affect customer service. Barnes & Noble said Monday that it was trimming its workforce after a weak holiday shopping season. It did not say how many people were being let go.

From news reports


8:30 a.m.: Commerce Department releases retail sales data for January.

8:30 a.m.: Labor Department releases consumer price index for January.