Lawsuit: Apple AirTags Are a Stalker's Dream

Women suing company say devices are 'unreasonably dangerous'
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 6, 2022 5:17 PM CST
Women Stalked via AirTags Are Suing Apple
The AirTag tracking device is introduced during a virtual event held to announce new Apple products, Tuesday, April 20, 2021.   (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)

Apple says its AirTag tracking devices are "designed to track items not people"—but a lawsuit filed Monday calls them "unreasonably dangerous" products that make life easy for stalkers. The proposed class-action lawsuit was filed in federal court in California by two women who said ex-partners used AirTags to stalk them, USA Today reports. Lauren Hughes of Texas said she found an AirTag concealed in a wheel well of her car after ending a three-month relationship and being stalked online. The other plaintiff, a New York woman who was called Jane Doe in the filing, said she found an AirTag in her child's backpack after a "contentious divorce"—and it was replaced after she removed it.

"Ms Doe continues to fear for her safety—at minimum, her stalker has evidenced a commitment to continuing to use AirTags to track, harass, and threaten her, and continues to use AirTags to find Plaintiff’s location," the lawsuit states, per CNN. It adds that she chose to file the lawsuit anonymously because being identified could "expose her to increased risk of harassment and/or physical harm." The devices are around the size of a quarter, and Apple markets them as a way to keep track of things like keys and wallets. They use a Bluetooth signal that can be detected by Apple's "Find My" app.

The lawsuit accuses Apple of failing to "adequately disclose the risks associated with the AirTag." It cites cases in which AirTags were used to stalk people, including a case in Indianapolis earlier this year in which a woman ran over her boyfriend, killing him, after tracking him with an AirTag. Apple says it has created safeguards that protect people from being tracked, including a feature that sends a message to a person's phone if they are moving with an AirTag that's not registered to them, the BBC reports. The lawsuit says the measures are "woefully inadequate" and there is a "gross imbalance" between the protections available to Apple users and those available to Android users. (More Apple stories.)

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