Apple sued for selling private iTunes data for approximately $136 per thousand customers

By Digit NewsDesk | Updated 26 May 2019
Apple sued for selling private iTunes data for approximately $136 per thousand customers
  • Apple has been sued in Federal Court of San Francisco for selling data of iTunes customers
  • The lawsuit has been filed by Apple’s customers in Rhode Island and Michigan
  • The lawsuit could be a big blow for the Cupertino-based company which stresses on its focus on user privacy

Apple is known to market its products as the most privacy-focussed offerings out there. The company, in the past, has held its ground against sharing private user information even with lawmakers and other official authorities. However, a class action lawsuit filed against Apple in the federal court of San Francisco alleges otherwise. Three iTunes customers from Rhode Island and Michigan have filed the lawsuit against Apple, on behalf of their respective states, alleging that the company sold private iTunes listening data without prior consent from customers. According to the complaint, Apple’s disclosure of private iTunes listening data can be used for targeting vulnerable users and profiling them on the basis of their income, previous purchases, location and more.

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“For example, any person or entity could rent a list with the names and addresses of all unmarried, college-educated women over the age of 70 with a household income of over $80,000 who purchased country music from Apple via its iTunes Store mobile application,” the customers said. “Such a list is available for sale for approximately $136 per thousand customers listed,” the lawsuit alleges. There are no other details provided by Bloomberg, which first reported on the incident.

The complainants are reportedly seeking $250 for each iTunes customer in Rhode Island and $5,000 for each iTunes customer in Michigan, based on the privacy laws of each state.

Apple has not yet responded officially on the status if the lawsuit or its stance on the alleged unlawful data sharing practices.

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