Apple, “privacy champion”, sued for stalking its users without their consent


Nathan Le Gohlisse

Hardware Specialist

November 14, 2022 at 4:15 p.m.


Apple Store, New York © Alexandre Boero for Clubic

© Alexandre Boero for Clubic

Cantor of respect for privacy, Apple strives to remind us at each keynote how conscientious it is in this area. We learned this week, however, without any real surprise, that the Cupertino giant would collect a lot of data without the knowledge of the users of its iPhone.

Two weights, two measures for Apple and respect for privacy? In any case, this is what the reason for a complaint filed across the Atlantic suggests. The Apple firm will indeed have to explain itself in court for having obviously continued to collect a lot of data on iPhones, including when users had previously changed their settings to avoid any tracking.

Everything you do on your iPhone scrutinized by Apple?

The complaint is based on the work of Tommy Mysk and Talal Haj Bakry, security researchers for the Mysk company, who recently discovered that iOS was transmitting to Apple ” each of your clicks » when the firm’s applications are used. More importantly, we learn above all that attempts to deactivate these data transmissions from the settings would be totally futile. Understand that disabling data sharing with Apple is actually illusory: the data would indeed continue to flow to the firm’s servers and then be analyzed.

And in this case, this information is rather detailed. For example, Apple would receive in real time the research data of a user visiting the App Store, but also the elements on which he clicked and the duration of consultation of an application. Same idea for the Stocks application. Apple knows exactly what stocks you’re following or what stock-related articles you’ve read in the app. Apple also knows what day and what time you found this information. Finally, we learn that some Apple applications also collect detailed data on the user’s iPhone: the model, the screen resolution or the keyboard language used.

A complaint filed as dry

In light of these findings, a class action was filed late last week against Apple in California. The latter considers that the firm is in violation of the California Invasion of Privacy Actwhich aims to protect users’ right to block tracking, including when it is set up for analytical purposes.

As specified Mashable, however, the focus of the complaint is not specifically on Apple’s collection of data (all tech giants do this), but on the fact that the firm does not in fact take into account the parameters at all allowing, theoretically, to refuse this sharing of information. The trial should therefore be interesting to follow since Apple will be asked to explain itself on this point.

Sources: Mashable, Bloomberg


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