Apple Sued By Stalking Victims Over Alleged AirTag Tracking
Saturday December 10, 2022. 01:45 AM , from Slashdot/Apple
schwit1 shares a report from Popular Science: [T]wo women filed a potential class action lawsuit against Apple, alleging the company has ignored critics' and security experts' repeated warnings that the company's AirTag devices are being repeatedly used to stalk and harass people. Both individuals were targets of past abuse from ex-partners and argued in the filing that Apple's subsequent safeguard solutions remain wholly inadequate for consumers. 'With a price point of just $29, it has become the weapon of choice of stalkers and abusers,' reads a portion of the lawsuit, as The New York Times reported.
Apple first debuted AirTags in April 2021. Within the ensuing eight months, at least 150 police reports from just eight precincts reviewed by Motherboard explicitly mentioned abusers utilizing the tracking devices to stalk and harass women. In the new lawsuit, plaintiffs allege that one woman's abuser hid the location devices within her car's wheel well. At the same time, the other woman's abuser placed one in their child's backpack following a contentious divorce, according to the suit. Security experts have since cautioned that hundreds more similar situations likely remain unreported or even undetected.
The lawsuit (PDF), published by Ars Technica, cites them as 'one of the products that has revolutionized the scope, breadth, and ease of location-based stalking,' arguing that 'what separates the AirTag from any competitor product is its unparalleled accuracy, ease of use (it fits seamlessly into Apple's existing suite of products), and affordability.' The proposed class action lawsuit seeks unspecified damages for owners of iOS or Android devices which have been tracked with an AirTag or are at risk of being stalked. Since AirTags' introduction last year, at least two murders have occurred directly involving using Apple's surveillance gadget, according to the lawsuit.
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