Consumer software is increasingly being used to help businesses save money.
The US Department of Commerce’s Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) says there are more than 70,000 software products in use in the US and that sales of software products are up about 50 percent over the last five years.
But there are still major concerns about safety.
One of the biggest concerns concerns is that software is being marketed to people with mental illness.
One major way that software has been marketed to those with mental health conditions is to use it as a replacement for physical devices.
But a recent study by University of California, San Francisco, researchers found that there is no evidence that the use of software as a substitute for physical contact devices has resulted in significant safety concerns.
The study, published in the journal Applied Behavioral Science, looked at a database of more than 1,000 lawsuits that were filed against companies that sold electronic devices that were used to diagnose patients.
Among those companies, the researchers found the use was widespread.
There were 883 cases of people with severe mental illness suing companies over the electronic device, which could include a device with a digital heart monitor, a hearing aid, a camera, a phone or a wristband.
“We found that the number of people who were sued for using electronic devices to diagnose mental illness was much higher than the number who were suing for physical injuries,” said co-author and researcher, professor of psychology and psychiatry at UC San Francisco Dr. Joseph DeLuca.
DeLucas told Al Jazeera that there has been a significant rise in lawsuits over electronic devices in the last few years.
He said he has seen cases in which people are suing for injuries such as broken bones, brain damage and even death.
DeSousa said that there were also cases of lawsuits being filed against people who used the electronic devices as a means to get around safety laws.
“In some of those cases, people had to pay damages that were as high as $100,000 or more, or even hundreds of thousands of dollars, in the event that they died,” he said.
The use of electronic devices for diagnostic purposes has also been used to create a large and lucrative market for products that use the technology.
De Luca said there was a significant amount of money going to the software companies that developed those products and that they had been paid handsomely.
“That was one of the things that was troubling to us,” he explained.
DeMarcus Smith, the vice president of marketing for the consumer electronics industry trade group, the Electronics Manufacturers Association, said the increase in lawsuits against these companies was a concern.
“The number of lawsuits that have been filed in this space is huge,” he told Al.
“People are spending millions of dollars and even millions of times more than they are buying an electronic device,” he added.
Smith said that he had not seen any studies that directly linked the use for diagnosing mental health problems with the increased use of the electronic medical device.
“There are definitely some things that we need to look at in order to make sure that the devices that are being marketed are not causing people to harm themselves, but the devices themselves are not doing that,” he concluded.
DeSuise told Al he has been contacted by the CPSC and the FBI but he did not know if the CPSCs investigation of the use as a mental health diagnostic tool is continuing.
“This is something that’s going to be taken very seriously by the agency,” he responded.