Apple has fired an employee at its Valley Plaza store in Bakersfield (California) after he accessed an explicit photo of a customer.
Gloria Fuentes had taken her iPhone to the Valley Plaza store to get her phone screen repaired. Prior to the visit, she had apparently made an effort to remove personal information, such as financial data, from her iPhone.
But it seems that she forgot to remove some highly sensitive personal pictures from the phone, and unfortunately these were found by the Apple staffer in question.
“I was going to delete all the pictures from my phone too but forgot because they were texting me that they moved my appointment time up, so I was trying to rush over there,” Fuentes reportedly said via a Facebook post on 5 November.
The employee who worked on her phone (called Nic) had spent “quite a while” with it and asked her for her passcode twice, she wrote.
“I didn’t really pay any mind to it because I just figured he’s doing his job,” Fuentes reportedly wrote.
When Fuentes received her repaired iPhone back and went home, she found out that there was a message from her phone to an unsaved number, that contained an intimate photo of herself.
She said that she ‘instantly wanted to cry’ upon making the discovery.
“This guy went through my gallery and sent himself one of my EXTREMELY PERSONAL pictures that I took for my boyfriend and it had my geolocation on so he also knows where I live!”
Fuentes said that she had over 5,000 photos on her phone, and Nic would have had to scroll through thousands of pictures to find that one.
Fuentes then returned to the Apple store and confronted ‘Nic’ over the matter.
Nic apparently admitted that the unsaved number was his number, but that he didn’t know how the picture had been sent to him.
Fuentes spoke to a manager who told her they would look into it.
Apple said they launched an investigation into the allegations and had fired the member of staff.
In a statement to the Washington Post, which had first reported on the story, Apple said “We are grateful to the customer for bringing this deeply concerning situation to our attention.”
“Apple immediately launched an internal investigation and determined that the employee acted far outside the strict privacy guidelines to which we hold all Apple employees,” the firm said. “He is no longer associated with our company.”
Fuentes added in her Facebook statement that she would be pressing legal charges against Nic.
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