Apple Faces France Antitrust Complaint Over Privacy Controls

Apple in France

Apple is facing an antitrust complaint in France, the Financial Times reported. It revolves around the company’s plans to restrict trackers used in mobile advertising.

Apple Subject of Antitrust Complaint in France

Various trade groups in the online advertising industry, including publishers, app makers, adtech groups, and social media firms, asked the French competition authority to stop Apple from introducing the new controls early in 2021. If they got ahead, many apps will have to explicitly

Damien Geradin, a lawyer representing the complainants, said:

While privacy matters and needs to be protected, privacy rhetoric cannot be used as a fig leaf to justify anti-competitive practices that will destroy the mobile ad ecosystem while benefiting Apple.

Meanwhile, a spokesman confirmed that the French Competition Authority had received the complaint. It will “examine it with great attention given that it pertains to a sector that it follows closely,” they said.

In response, Apple said that privacy is “a fundamental human right” in a statement.

A user’s data belongs to them and they should get to decide whether to share their data and with whom,” the company said. “These rules apply equally to all developers — including Apple — and we have received strong support from regulators and privacy advocates.

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