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Apple will not be able to avoid a proposed class action lawsuit covering Siri privacy claims, reports Reuters. The suit in question, which was initially filed in 2019, accuses Apple's voice assistant Siri of violating user privacy.

siri-glow.png

The plaintiffs involved in the case can try to prove that Siri routinely recorded private conversations due to accidental activations, and that Apple disclosed those conversations to third parties such as advertisers, said the judge.

One user in the lawsuit claimed that his private discussions with his doctor about a "brand name surgical treatment" caused him to receive targeted ads for that treatment, while others said that their discussions about Air Jordan sneakers, Pit Viper sunglasses, and Olive Garden resulted in targeted ads.

That is not how Siri works and there has been no evidence that Apple has ever provided Siri recordings to advertisers. People have long accused social networks of listening in on their conversations and using those discussions for ad purposes, but this has never been proven.

Though it may be difficult for the plaintiffs to prove that Apple is providing Siri recordings to advertisers, Apple found itself embroiled in a Siri-related scandal in 2019 after it was revealed that Apple had contractors listening to Siri recordings where they heard private conversations involving drug deals, medical info, and more after Siri was accidentally activated.

Human-based Siri analysis was never a secret, but at the time, Apple's privacy terms did not make it clear that people could potentially hear conversations that were recorded via Siri. Apple temporarily suspended its Siri evaluation program and then ultimately implemented options to delete Siri recordings and to block them from being listened to. Apple also stopped using contractors.

Apple in iOS 15 has gone even further with Siri privacy and many Siri requests will now be handled entirely on device, so Siri content is not uploaded to Apple's servers for processing.

The plaintiffs in the lawsuit are permitted to pursue claims that Apple violated the federal Wiretap Act and California privacy law, in addition to breach of contract. The lawsuit has requested $5,000 per violation from Apple.

Article Link: Apple Can't Get Out of Siri Privacy Lawsuit, Says Judge
 

atoqir

macrumors regular
Jan 31, 2018
111
217
Apple is going to have it rough the next years now all the big boys are out to get them.

Weird how suddenly everybody stopped talking about CSAM though. Seems people got tired of complaining about it lol
 

nvmls

macrumors 65816
Mar 31, 2011
1,277
3,501
But Timmey would never do that, he got Apple to the top by being transparent!
 

Realityck

macrumors 68020
Nov 9, 2015
2,434
3,449
Silicon Valley, CA
One user in the lawsuit claimed that his private discussions with his doctor about a "brand name surgical treatment" caused him to receive targeted ads for that treatment, while others said that their discussions about Air Jordan sneakers, Pit Viper sunglasses, and Olive Garden resulted in targeted ads.

That is not how Siri works and there has been no evidence that Apple has ever provided Siri recordings to advertisers. People have long accused social networks of listening in on their conversations and using those discussions for ad purposes, but this has never been proven.
Turns out the same law Firm was also suing Google earlier (July 1st)
see Google must face Voice Assistant privacy lawsuit -U.S. judge also Reuters article
 
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zakarhino

macrumors demi-god
Sep 13, 2014
1,550
3,912
Berkeley
Apple is going to have it rough the next years now all the big boys are out to get them.

Weird how suddenly everybody stopped talking about CSAM though. Seems people got tired of complaining about it lol

People haven't stopped talking about it. The threads on MacRumors are still very active. The Apple subreddit has a daily mega thread to discuss it. Security experts are still writing articles about it. People are still signing petitions.

The only person that stopped talking about it is Apple. They know they're powerful enough to simply ignore customers' complaints. They know they've set up their ecosystem to be a take it or leave it deal and hardly anyone can go through the trouble of leaving an ecosystem they've invested so much time and money into. It's covert extortion and it's what happens when entities become too powerful to answer to the people they serve, be it the relationship between government and people or customer and cartel business.
 

cyanite

macrumors regular
Sep 28, 2015
102
57
"What happens on iPhone stays on iPhone"…
Well, Siri is a cloud service so it doesn't strictly happen on the iPhone :)

Good. Now queue the usual tirade of Apple apologists explaining that Apple getting out of this lawsuit would actually be a good thing.
I mean, the claims about the ads are pretty ridiculous, and pretty much impossible to prove.
 
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MauiPa

macrumors 68020
Apr 18, 2018
2,349
3,370
hmmm. Fact amazon and google both send targeted ads based on conversations overheard, it has happened to people in my family. Seeing apple doesn't sell that info, but we know google and amazon do, how about suing them, wouldn't there be more money for the lawyers? A quandary
 

MauiPa

macrumors 68020
Apr 18, 2018
2,349
3,370
How does MacRumors staff know this isn't how Siri works, or that Apple has never done this? Or did I miss that the author of this article is Tim Cook?
or how do you know they do when all of the evidence is to the contrary? I know we all just live in a world where anything can be made up at any time about any subject and someone will believe it. But sell advertising data, there would be a trail dude, people would know
 

Duane Martin

macrumors 6502a
Oct 15, 2004
529
1,188
Calgary, Alberta
So they should make their argument in court and lose if it means they can't prove anything, that's better than simply letting Apple get out of the lawsuit in the first place.
The term "frivolous litigation" comes to mind. It ties up the court system and wastes money and time. However, just because you are paranoid does not mean you are not being persecuted.

I would think that if Apple was monetizing Siri recordings that would be a pretty easy thing to prove as there would have to be so many people involved.
 

bobcomer

macrumors 68000
May 18, 2015
1,555
1,255
Apple is going to have it rough the next years now all the big boys are out to get them.

Weird how suddenly everybody stopped talking about CSAM though. Seems people got tired of complaining about it lol
That's part of it, but I suspect we've all made our plans about what to do about it, if anything, so there's no need to talk about until/if something changes.
 
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