Apple Privacy: More Than Meets the Eye?

iPhone

Since its launch in 2007, Apple has sold an incredible 1.3 billion iPhones worldwide, and over 100 million people use Macs worldwide. Apple has a grip on the smart device market, and there’s a good chance that you are reading this blog on an Apple device. Apple claims that privacy is one of its core values, but is there more to this than meets the eye?

Apple’s history of hacks

Despite Apple’s claim of being incredibly secure regarding its software and devices, they have a history of high-profile attacks that shows that users have not been completely safe. Examples of this include the famous iCloud hack of 2014 where many celebrities had their private photos released online. But this isn’t the only time Apple has been successfully targeted.

More recently, in September 2021, researchers discovered that Israeli spyware named Pegasus had compromised Apple devices. This spyware has been used by governments to spy on activists, politicians, and journalists.

Other hacks include Google discovering a data exploit in 2019 and the iOS Dev Centre being hacked in 2013 which exposed over 250,000 developers. Apple is not a saint when it comes to data privacy, and users need to always be wary of what could happen.

How Apple sneaks around its own privacy policy

The Financial Times wrote about Apple’s recent move to allow app developers to collect data from users, even though their privacy policy allows users to block data sharing. There are over 1 billion iPhone users, and companies are being allowed to collect data from them after this looser privacy policy.

That would ultimately hurt iOS

Cory Munchbach

BlueConic

There’s no doubting that Apple has changed the way in which users are in control of their data more than ever before, but there have had to be changed from the initial hard stance that was set with iOS 14.5. Cory Munchbach, Chief Operating Officer at customer data platform BlueConic, sums this up, emphasising that the original rules would have caused too much disruption of the mobile ads ecosystem.

“Apple can’t put themselves in a situation where they are basically gutting their top-performing apps from a user-consumption perspective,” she said. “That would ultimately hurt iOS.”

Apple Security

Technically, no. But as we explained in our Amazon article, Apple smart devices are always waiting for a spoken command to activate. However, this doesn’t mean you can leniently use your device. Be careful what apps you give consent to record you, as Apple is known for not monitoring apps to see if they are compliant with their rules. Caution is key.

Our The Internet of Things series covers the biggest companies and how they use data, and Apple is a major part of this. Siri is helpful, but it’s always worth taking another thought regarding how much Apple actually cares about your privacy.

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