Apple has faced a major setback in a lawsuit as a California judge ruled against the company for using Apple AirTags for stalking. The lawsuit alleges that Apple Airtags help criminals track down victims. Apple tried to get the case dismissed. However, the company failed to convince the judge and the court ruled against Apple.

Apple has found itself embroiled in a class-action lawsuit over safety concerns related to its AirTag tracking devices. The lawsuit, filed in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, alleges that AirTags have been misused by stalkers, resulting in severe consequences, including instances of stalking, harassment and even murder. The plaintiffs claim that Apple’s AirTags have become a tool of choice for stalkers and abusers, raising significant questions about the safety features and potential risks associated with these tracking devices.

According to BloombergCalifornia Judge Vince Chabria ruled on Friday that the three plaintiffs in the class action have made sufficient claims for negligence and product liability.

Claims and legal proceedings

The lawsuit was originally filed in December 2022 and amended in October 2023. It gained traction as more individuals joined the legal action, highlighting widespread concerns about the misuse of AirTags. The plaintiffs in the case accused Apple of negligence and product liability. They claim the AirTags’ safety features were insufficient to prevent stalking incidents. Apple has made several efforts to improve safety measures since launch. The company now has new features such as making sounds when separated from the owner and notifications for unknown trackers. However, the plaintiffs allege that these measures were inadequate to address the risks posed by AirTags.

In October, more than 30 victims who were allegedly terrorized by stalkers using Apple AirTags joined a class-action lawsuit against Apple filed in a California court in December. Court documents show Apple has until Oct. 27 to respond to the revised complaint. The lawsuit claims that due to Apple’s negligence, AirTags have become “one of the most dangerous and terrifying technologies used by stalkers.” It is as they can be easily, cost-effectively and covertly used to “determine real-time location information and track victims”..

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Since the lawsuit was first filed in 2022, the plaintiffs say there are “numerous reports” showing that AirTags are often used for tracking. As of April 2022, international cases of AirTags tracking have increased, with US police receiving more than 150 reports. According to the complaint, there have been 19 recent cases of AirTags tracking in just one urban area in the United States: Tulsa, Oklahoma.

Apple AirTags


Following a ruling by US District Judge Vince Chabria, Apple was denied a motion to dismiss the case. Although the judge acknowledged Apple’s implementation of safety measures and the company’s argument that it should not be held liable for the misuse of AirTags, he allowed the case to proceed, saying that a final decision on Apple’s liability could not be made on this early stage. The judge wrote

“Ultimately, Apple may be right that California law does not require it to do more to reduce stalkers’ ability to effectively use AirTags, but that decision cannot be made at this early stage.”

Apple’s response

In response to the lawsuit, Apple emphasized its commitment to consumer safety. The company is working with Google to develop industry standards aimed at preventing the misuse of tracking devices. However, the legal battle highlights the complex challenges surrounding technology regulation. It also shows that it is companies’ responsibility to protect consumers from potential risks associated with their products.

Impact and ongoing concerns

The case has raised serious concerns about the potential dangers associated with tracking devices like AirTags. It also reveals the need for robust safeguards to prevent misuse. Plaintiffs highlighted the real-world consequences of AirTag pursuit incidents. This includes cases of violence and murder, which highlights the urgency of tackling these issues to protect people from harm.

As the class-action lawsuit against Apple moves forward, the outcome of this legal battle is likely to have broader implications for the tech industry and the regulation of tracking devices, underscoring the importance of balancing innovation with consumer safety and privacy.

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California court rules against Apple in a case claiming AirTags are “stalker weapons”