A case has been filed against Apple alleging the iPhone maker of harvesting user data irrespective of whether the user has consented to it or not. Plaintiff Elliot Libman is accusing Apple of violating user privacy and collecting massive amounts of user data with the aim of monetizing the same. The class action suit filed in the California Federal Court comes in the wake of an earlier report revealing how most Apple apps have been sending analytics data back to Apple. What is even more surprising is that Apple continued with the practice even while preaching the virtues of privacy and security of user info to others.
The issue was first detected by the software company Mysk. An in-depth investigation by the company revealed how user data from Apple apps such as Apple Music, Apple TV, Apple Books, Stocks, and such were routed back to the company servers. That included almost anything and everything that the user did while on the app. The information also included the individual ID number, the particular model of iPhone being used, the display resolution, keyboard language, the type of internet connection you have, and whatnot.
With the level of information Apple has access to, it can easily identify the device and its owner., something also referred to as device fingerprinting. What is interesting though is that Apple remains within limits when it came to Wallet or Health apps. The same research revealed there is no sensitive user info getting back to Apple. In other words, Apple does not have access to your health records or financial details. That may be fine but the level of other info it collects is enough to make a safe guess of what the user maybe be up to so far as their finances or health is concerned.
“Through its pervasive and unlawful data tracking and collection business, Apple knows even the most intimate and potentially embarrassing aspects of the user’s app usage—regardless of whether the user accepts Apple’s illusory offer to keep such activities private,” the lawsuit said.
Apple has always gone to town trumpeting how its iPhone or iPad devices are among the safest around, one that complies with the highest standards of user privacy and safety. The company even highlighted how it empowers users to actually turn off sharing of device analytics if they so wished, something that turned out to be largely fallacious. Apple is yet to comment on the revelation as well as the court case that it has been slapped with.