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Apple's AirTag is at the center of a new lawsuit alleging that stalkers could too easily use a tracking device to track victims' movements.
On Monday in San Francisco federal court, two women alleged that Apple's AirTag was used by their former partners in an attempt to track where they went. Apple has been accused of making a device that is allegedly unsafe due to the fact that it can easily be used for offensive purposes such as stalking.
One of the two women claims that the AirTag was placed in the wheel arch of her car, according to Bloomberg. Thus, her ex-boyfriend was able to find out where she moved to avoid being harassed by him.
Another said that the device was placed in her baby's backpack by her ex-husband, again to try and track the baby and her movements.
While Apple includes various features to try to warn people about spoofed AirTags as part of its anti-retaliation features, the proposed class action lawsuit disputes their effectiveness. “While Apple has built protections into the AirTag product, they are insufficient and do next to nothing to alert people in a timely manner that they are being tracked,” the complaint reads.
Apple was allegedly negligent in releasing an unsafe device, the lawsuit alleges, asking the court for unspecified monetary damages. It also seeks to represent those “who have been persecuted through this dangerous product.”
While it makes sense in the lawsuit that Apple has made the use of trackers more accessible to the public, Apple at least acknowledges the potential for malicious use of AirTag. In addition, trackers without such features have been around for much longer than AirTags, which could be used instead if former partners wanted to be more secretive.
Since its inception, AirTag has been the source of many people-tracking stories, both positive and negative. It assisted in arresting luggage thieves and tracking down stolen vehicles, but was also used for prosecutions.
In one case it came to murder.