ACCC Takes Legal Action Against Apple over Error 53

In late 2014 reports of iPhone users receiving an error code 53 after updating their software proved to be a result of a software “security measure” to check that the Touch ID fingerprint scanner was working correctly. If the software detected a mismatch between the sensor and the screen, it would assume that an unauthorised attempt had been made to access the device and disable it completely. However this also affected users who had gone to third party repairers instead of to Apple. Apple issued a fix that made affected devices usable again, in part by disabling Touch ID In February 2016.

In April the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) began legal action against Apple after it alleges that Apple “routinely refused” to repair devices disabled by an error if they had previously been fixed by an unauthorised provider.

The court documents reveal how the ACCC’s investigators called all 13 of Apple’s Australian retailers, posing as customers whose iPhone speakers had stopped working after the screen had been replaced. In each case, Apple told the caller “that no Apple entity… was required to, or would, remedy the defective speaker at no cost… if the screen of the iPhone had been replaced by someone other than Apple Australia or an Apple-authorised service provider”.

Apple said that the phone calls had been about “hypothetical circumstances” and that no breach of consumer law had therefore occurred.

Original source BBCNews