Affiliate Disclosure
If you buy through our links, we may get a commission. Read our ethics policy.

AirTag anti-stalking class-action lawsuit given the green light

AirTag on a keyring.

An attempted class-action lawsuit against Apple is being allowed to proceed, after plaintiffs convinced a judge that there are negligence issues surrounding the AirTags tracker.

Initially filed in December 2022 and amended in October 2023 following an "explosion of reporting," the lawsuit from dozens of people in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California has become a problem for Apple.

On Friday, U.S. District Judge Vince Chhabria ruled that some of the claims in the lawsuit were sufficiently argued enough to proceed. Accusations of negligence and product liability made it through, reports Bloomberg, but other claims were dismissed by the judge.

Three claims remain in the lawsuit, which alleges that the plaintiffs suffered because of "substantial" issues with AirTag's safety features, which came to light when they were stalked. By not sufficiently implementing safeguards, AirTag "became the weapon of choice of stalkers and abusers," the complaint states, despite Apple's attempts to improve them post-launch.

Apple's remedies, including notifying people who may be being tracked and beeping when separated from the user for a prolonged period of time, are deemed to be "woefully inadequate" in the complaint. Furthermore, there was an apparent "gross imbalance" between the protections that Apple device users received and those of Android users.

Apple, meanwhile, argued to the court that it had included "industry-first" safety measures as part of the AirTag's design. Apple also insisted that it should not be held responsible for instances where AirTag could be misused.

In his ruling, Judge Chhabria said that, while Apple may well be in the clear as California law didn't require the company to do more to reduce the ability of stalkers to use AirTag, "that determination cannot be made at this early stage."

Most of the claims were "inadequately pled," the judge wrote, but the claims of negligence and product liability did manage to survive. "It's a close question," the judge remarked.