(CNN) Apple is facing a lawsuit from two women who say their ex-partners used the company’s AirTag devices to track their location, jeopardizing their safety.
The class action lawsuit was filed Monday in federal court in San Francisco on behalf of a woman from Texas and another from New York. The plaintiffs seek compensation for damages that were not specified.
One of the women claims that her ex-boyfriend placed an AirTag ––a small tracking device, slightly larger than a quarter and intended to help locate lost items–– in the wheel well of a tire on her auto. The device was allegedly colored in with a marker and wrapped in a plastic bag to camouflage it.
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The other woman, whose name is listed in the lawsuit as Jane Doe, said her ex-husband, who had harassed her and asked her where she was, put an AirTag in their son’s backpack, according to the documents. Although she tried to disable the device, another one soon appeared, according to the lawsuit.
“Ms. Doe continues to fear for her safety. At a minimum, her harasser has demonstrated a commitment to continue using AirTags to track, harass, and threaten her, and she continues to use AirTags to track down plaintiff,” the documents state. “[Ella] seeks to file this lawsuit anonymously, due to the real risk that being identified would expose you to increased risk of harassment and/or physical harm.”
Apple did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the lawsuit.
An Apple Airtag.
In 2021, Apple released AirTag, a $29 tile-like bluetooth locator that sticks on and helps users find items like keys, wallets, laptops, or even a car, putting almost anyone on the phone. sew a fingerprint, allowing you to find it on a map. But soon after its release, some experts warned that the devices could be used to track people without their consent.
It’s not the first time AirTags have allegedly been used for unwanted tracking. In June, an Indiana woman produced one to track down and ultimately murder her boyfriend over an alleged affair, according to some reports. They have also been used to steal cars.
Earlier this year, Apple added more security measures to AirTags to reduce the chance of unwanted tracking. In a blog post, Apple says it has worked with security groups and law enforcement to identify other ways to update its AirTag security warnings, including alerting people earlier and louder if the tiny tracker is suspected. Bluetooth is following someone.
“We’ve noticed that people can receive unwanted tracking alerts for benign reasons, such as when they borrow someone’s keys with an AirTag attached, or when they’re traveling in a car with a family member’s AirPods inside.” the company said in a statement at the time. “We have also seen reports of bad figures attempting to misuse the AirTag with malicious or criminal fines.”
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“We condemn in the strongest possible terms any malicious use of our products,” the company said.
But the new lawsuit alleges those security measures have done little to protect victims. “While Apple has built safeguards into the AirTag product, they are woefully inadequate and do little, if anything, to promptly alert people that they are being tracked,” the lawsuit stated.
The lawsuit added that the women wanted to file the lawsuit on behalf of those who “have been and are at risk of harassment through this dangerous product.”
The CNN Wire
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