But Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg defended his company's ad-based business model said users were aware of a trade-off for free services.
Cook, speaking at the International Conference of Data Protection and Privacy Commissioners, said Apple would support a U.S. privacy law and also touted the iPhone maker's commitment to protect users' data and privacy.
Apple, which designs many of its products so that it cannot see users' data, has largely avoided the data privacy scandals that have enmeshed its rivals Google and Facebook this year.
"The desire to put profits over privacy is nothing new," Cook told a packed audience of privacy regulators, corporate executives and other participants.
Issues over how data is used and how consumers can protect their personal information are under the spotlight after big breaches of data privacy involving millions of internet and social media users in Europe and the United States.