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Thread: Apple Sued for Selling iTunes Data

  1. #1
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    Post Apple Sued for Selling iTunes Data

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    Three Apple customers from Michigan and Rhode Island are suing Apple in federal court, alleging that the company is selling user data without users' express consent. The suit has been filed as Wheaton v Apple Inc., 19-cv-02883, U.S. District Court, Northern District of California (San Francisco) and seeks damages of $5,000 USD per user in Michigan and $250 per user in Rhode Island—the maximum amount (I think) under each state's respective privacy law.

    The plaintiffs claim that the disclosure and sale of their listening habits and personal information is not only unlawful but a potentially dangerous breach of privacy as well:

    “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.”
    Apple has yet to respond to the source's request for comment on the matter. If the suit has merit it might prove that Cupertino isn't necessarily the custodian of user privacy that it claims to be.

    Source: TIME
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    This might be interesting to follow. I'd be very surprised to find that Apple doesn't have fine print somewhere that describes what users are permitting and must agree to before using the service. Also, doesn't Apple declare that they strip out user ID from their data and therefore preserve privacy while compiling statistics?

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    iTunes does have a user agreement, though I've read it about as thoroughly as most anyone else.

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