A number of German media companies refused to just accept the new privacy policy Apple rolled out with its iOS 14.5 on Monday. They filed a complaint with the German Federal Cartel Office claiming Apple is abusing its market power.

The plaintiffs

Seven major marketing and media businesses united under the umbrella of The German Advertising Federation (ZAW) to challenge Apple’s newly imposed “App Tracking Transparency” (ATT) program. As of Monday April 26, 2021, it is no longer possible to use the IDFA tracking on iOS devices without the user’s permission. Moreover, Apple’s new policy prohibits the use of third-party data processing services.

The complaint claims that Apple’s own advertising services are not affected by the same changes meaning that Apple is using the ATT to solely command huge amounts of commerically relevant user data.

Apple has denied the allegations stating that “A user’s data belongs to them and they should get to decide whether to share their data and with whom.”

The Federal Cartel Office confirmed receipt of the complaint and promised to look into it. Last month, a similar antitrust complaint was filed in France, but the country’s regulator dismissed it.

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