Lawsuit Slams Apple for iPhone Apps Collecting User Data

| News

Apple was hit with a lawsuit on December 23 alleging the company is allowing third-party iPhone and iPad apps to gather personal information from users and transmit it to advertisers without authorization.

The lawsuit was filed in San Jose in the Northern District of California Federal Court on behalf of Jonathan Lalo, according to BusinessWeek. Mr. Lalo and his attorneys are seeking class action status for their lawsuit.

According to the filing, apps are collecting the unique identifier codes in iOS devices and sending that information to advertisers so they can track the apps users are downloading, along with how much time is spent using individual apps. The suit also claims “Some apps are also selling additional information to ad networks, including users’ location, age, gender, income, ethnicity, sexual orientation and political views.”

Apps that are specifically named in the lawsuit include Pandora, Paper Toss, the Weather Channel and Dictionary.com.

Mr. Lalo alleged in his lawsuit that users can’t block apps from collecting their unique UDID identifier code, and that the company claims that the App Store review process blocks apps that collect user information without consent.

Apple has not commented on the lawsuit.

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2 Comments

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

I hope Nemo will weigh in on whether the relative transparency as privacy mechanism on Android versus an opaque approval process on iOS has any bearing about why this suit was brought against Apple or its relative chance of success given Apple’s practices.

It seems very strange to me that a company that banned third party ad networks “purportedly” over data collection practices would end up with this kind of a problem.

Anthony

Will this lawsuit deal with the unknown collection of nightly data from our phones THAT GO AGAINST OUR DATA PLAN USAGE?????

Not that its bad enough that we are paying for their collection of this data but that we dont know (nor have control over) the data contents, where the data is going, whom might get their hands on it, for what purposes do they want it, and so on.

Deception will get AT&T nowhere fast.

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