Apple reportedly threatened to fire an employee who shared a TikTok video with basic iPhone security advice.
Paris Campbell, the employee, claims she was told she violated company policy by identifying herself as an Apple employee and posting about Apple-related topics.
The company’s social media policy cautions employees against posting about customers, colleagues, or confidential information — but Apple does not explicitly prohibit employees from posting about technology.
Campbell, a single mother living in New York, has been with Apple for nearly six years, most recently as an Apple retail repair technician. She responded to another TikTok user who’d lost her iPhone at Coachella last week, then received threatening text messages to sell her personal information on the black market unless she removed the iPhone from her Apple ID.
“I can’t tell you how I know this information, but I can tell you that I’ve been a certified hardware engineer for a certain company that likes to talk about fruit for the last six years. Your phone is actually useless to them, and you’re the only one who can save them, and I strongly advise you not to,” Campbell said in her response video, before warning the user not to listen to the extortionists.
@stopitparis #stitch with @Stella ♬ Love You So – The King Khan & BBQ Show
That video quickly went viral, garnering 5 million views in less than 24 hours. Campbell received a call from a manager on Friday, telling her she needed to remove the video or face disciplinary action “up to and including termination.” When she asked what would happen if she left the video up, the manager backtracked and said he would get back to her. He hasn’t so far.
Over the weekend, Campbell posted a second video titled “dear Apple,” in which she revealed that she worked for Apple and stated that she was waiting to hear if she would be fired. “Until this video, I’d never actually identified myself as an Apple employee,” she explained. “The funny thing is, after reviewing the social media policies… nowhere does it say I can’t publicly identify myself as an Apple employee, only that I shouldn’t do so in a way that makes the company look bad.”
@stopitparis hey apple, don’t fire me #techtok #greenscreen ♬ original sound – paris campbell
Campbell, a stand-up comedian since 2011, has a sizable social media following, including 439,000 TikTok followers.
Her posts’ popularity may not be enough to hold her from being fired. Apple fired two high-profile activists last year for allegedly sharing confidential information. However, Campbell claims that her videos contain no information that isn’t already widely available.