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French Watchdog Fines Apple Over Ads

 |  January 4, 2023

France’s privacy watchdog CNIL on Wednesday said it had imposed an 8 million euro ($8.49 million) fine linked to ad personalisation in the iPhone maker’s App Store, citing shortcomings with regard to user consent.

“The advertising targeting settings available from the “Settings” icon of the iPhone were pre-checked by default”, the CNIL said in a statement, even though that was not strictly necessary for the device’s functioning.

Related: Korean Watchdog Raids Apple Over Excessive Fee Collection

It added that the case, which dates back to 2021, concerned an old version of the phone’s iOS operating software.

The lobby group which brought the case had argued that Apple under iOS 14 had failed to ask iPhone users clearly enough for their prior consent to allow installed mobile apps to gather a key identifier used for targeted ads.

Apple said after the announcement it was “disappointed with this decision” and that it would file an appeal.