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An Apple store employee in California was recently fired after getting caught sending himself a female customer’s personal photos while repairing her phone.
The incident began last week when Gloria Fuentes took her phone to an Apple Store in Bakersfield to have her screen repaired.
Fuentes said in a Facebook post that after picking up her phone she discovered an outgoing text message to a number she didn’t recognize. Even worse, the text included what she described as “one of my EXTREMELY PERSONAL pictures that I took for my boyfriend.”
Fuentes believes the employee spent a significant amount of time going through her phone given that the picture “was from almost a year ago so he had to have scrolled up for a while.” The sensitive photo had also been geotagged to her home address, making the privacy breach even more concerning.
After returning to the store, Fuentes says she confronted the employee and alerted the store’s manager to her discovery. The employee reportedly admitted that the photo had indeed been sent to his personal phone but denied being responsible.
“I could just imagine that I’m not the only person he’s done this to and what if he’s done this to someone’s teenage daughter or even any other woman at all!!” Fuentes said on Facebook.
Apple confirmed in a statement to Fox 58 KBAK that the employee has since been fired.
“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,” a spokesman said. “He is no longer associated with our company.”
The employee’s actions also caught the attention of the Bakersfield Police Department, which has opened an investigation into the incident as well.
Unfortunately, this isn’t the first time an Apple employee has been fired for inappropriate behavior involving customers.
Numerous Apple employees were fired in Australia in 2016 after it was learned that they were photographing female customers. The photos were then shared with other employees so they could rate the customers based on their looks.
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Mikael Thalen is a tech and security reporter based in Seattle, covering social media, data breaches, hackers, and more.