Tags National Security Agency

Apple among those asking Obama to reject calls for government access to encrypted data

obama-apple-google

Apple and Google have co-signed a letter calling on President Obama to reject any government proposal to allow the government backdoor access to encrypted data on smartphones and other devices. The Washington Post says the letter, due to be delivered today, is signed by more than 140 tech companies, prominent technologists and civil society groups.

The signatories urge Obama to follow the group’s unanimous recommendation that the government should “fully support and not undermine efforts to create encryption standards” and not “in any way subvert, undermine, weaken or make vulnerable” commercial software.

Apple uses end-to-end encryption for iMessages, meaning that Apple has no way to access the data even if presented with a court order. Tim Cook stated last year “it’s encrypted, and we don’t have the key.”

The FBI has been pushing increasingly hard to require tech companies to build in backdoor access to their encryption systems to allow access by law enforcement, even going so far as to say that Apple could be responsible for the death of a child. U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder has also cited child safety as a justification for demanding access to encrypted data.

The letter calling on Obama to reject this argument is also signed by five members of a presidential review group appointed by Obama in 2013 to assess technology policies in the wake of leaks by former intelligence contractor Edward Snowden.

Many in the tech industry have pointed out that, aside from the obvious concerns over government intrusion into the private lives of its citizens, any backdoor used by the government could potentially be discovered and exploited by hackers and foreign governments.


Filed under: AAPL Company Tagged: Apple Inc, Barack Obama, edward snowden, Encryption, FBI, Federal Bureau of Investigation, Google, National Security Agency, NSA, privacy, Security

Check out 9to5Mac for more breaking coverage of AAPL Company, Google, and Apple Inc.

What do you think? Discuss "Apple among those asking Obama to reject calls for government access to encrypted data" with our community.

Comments Off on Apple among those asking Obama to reject calls for government access to encrypted data

Photo

Ben Lovejoy

May 19th

Apple

Mac

The NSA Actually Named a Program Skynet

In the Terminator franchise, Skynet is an evil military computer system that launches war on humanity. And at some point, someone in the National Security Agency sat down and thought, “Damn, that’s a sick thing to name a secret system!”

Read more...









Comments Off on The NSA Actually Named a Program Skynet

Photo

Kate Knibbs

May 8th

Uncategorized

Congrats to the NSA for Making the Creepiest Earth Day Mascot Ever

The National Security Agency had released a mascot (?) for Earth Day (??) and it’s an anthropomorphized and oddly buff recycling bin named Dunk (???).

Read more...








Comments Off on Congrats to the NSA for Making the Creepiest Earth Day Mascot Ever

Photo

Kate Knibbs

April 20th

Uncategorized

NSA Has a Special Room to Find Terrorist Memos Hidden in Porn  

If you’re working for the National Security Agency, watching hours of hardcore porno can be just another day at work . So much so, there’s even a special porn room in which to protect national security. Where agents look past boobs for clues in the glut of smut.

Read more...








Comments Off on NSA Has a Special Room to Find Terrorist Memos Hidden in Porn  

Photo

Kate Knibbs

April 6th

Uncategorized

Tim Cook talks Snowden, Apple Car and Steve Jobs as the best teacher he’s ever had

2,w=993,c=0.bild

Tim Cook appears to be using his international tour, which so far includes Israel, Germany and the UK, to push a second product every bit as hard as the Apple Watch: privacy. In an interview with the German newspaper BILD posted yesterday (paywall), Cook went as far as to praise Edward Snowden for his role in prompting discussion of the issue.

If Snowden did anything for us at all, then it was to get us to talk more about these things. [Apple’s] values have always been the same.

The comments follow a meeting with German Chancellor Angela Merkel, at which data privacy was reportedly a key topic. Cook also told the Telegraph last week that “none of us should accept that the government or a company or anybody should have access to all of our private information.” Cook has in the past resisted FBI pressure to compromise its strong encryption, and was the only tech CEO to attend a recent White House cybersecurity summit.

In the BILD interview, Cook reiterated Apple’s stance on privacy, and also said that as Apple had grown larger, it had taken deliberate decisions to be less secretive about some aspects of its business … 

Cook stressed that Apple takes pains to ensure that it does not have access to unnecessary data about its customers.

We don’t read your emails, we don’t read your messages, we find it unacceptable to do that. I don’t want people reading mine! […]

We have designed Apple Pay purposely so that we don’t know where you buy something, how much you pay for it, what you bought. We don’t want to know any of that.

He said that when Apple does request permission to use customer data, it is always used to improve products and customers “have a right to stop that at any time.“

Cook said that Apple had chosen to be extremely transparent about privacy issues, and also to share its work on improving working conditions in its supply chain in the hope that this would help accelerate the pace of change.

In the past we were secretive about everything. When Apple got a little larger, we realized that we can actually change some more things in the world if we are extremely transparent around social issues like privacy, security, education, or the environment.

If Apple improves working conditions this might possibly put some pressure on other manufacturers to copy it. This is an area where I wish that others copy us.

There would, though, be no change in Apple’s secrecy about its product plans.

We are still secretive about our coming products. So if you ask me what we are working on I’m not going to answer this question.” Asked about the Apple car, he replied simply: “I have read the rumours. I can’t comment on it.”

Shortly after what would have been Steve Job’s 60th birthday, Cook described Steve as the best teacher he’d ever had.

He may not always get the appropriate credit for this, but he was by far the best teacher I ever had. You will probably never read this in a book because people focus on other parts of his personality.

He taught me that the joy is in the journey. That it’s not in an event, it’s not in shipping a product or an award. It’s in the journey itself.


Filed under: AAPL Company Tagged: AAPL, Angela Merkel, Apple Inc, data privacy, edward snowden, Encryption, FBI, Germany, National Security Agency, privacy, Security

Visit 9to5Mac to find more special coverage of AAPL Company, AAPL, and Apple Inc.

What do you think? Discuss "Tim Cook talks Snowden, Apple Car and Steve Jobs as the best teacher he’s ever had" with our community.

Comments Off on Tim Cook talks Snowden, Apple Car and Steve Jobs as the best teacher he’s ever had

Photo

Ben Lovejoy

March 2nd

Apple

Mac

China accused of protectionism through new cybersecurity rules aimed at western tech companies

apple-store-china

The NY Times reports that the Chinese government has adopted a set of supposed cybersecurity regulations on western companies selling technology to banks. These requirements are so absurd that it would be impossible for companies like Apple to comply.

The Chinese government has adopted new regulations requiring companies that sell computer equipment to Chinese banks to turn over secret source code, submit to invasive audits and build so-called back doors into hardware and software, according to a copy of the rules obtained by foreign technology companies that do billions of dollars’ worth of business in China.

The paper reports that while the regulations are so far limited to sales to Chinese banks, they are merely the first in a series of new cybersecurity policies expected to be introduced in the coming months, and businesses fear that they are designed to protect local manufacturers from western companies. It was recently announced that Apple became the biggest smartphone seller in China in the final quarter of last year … 

It was revealed last week that Tim Cook had agreed to allow China’s State Internet Information Office to carry out security audits of Apple products sold in the country, but Apple has always insisted that it will never allow backdoor access to its products nor compromise the encryption used by its products and services.

China has for some time used both security scares and regulatory barriers against Apple, with this latest development suggesting that the country may be intending to significantly up the ante.

One theory raised in the NY Times piece is that the moves may be retaliation for an effective US ban on Huawei servers and networking products following concerns that they contained backdoor access for use by the Chinese government.

Photo: thenextweb.com


Filed under: AAPL Company Tagged: china, China security, cybersecurity, Government of the People's Republic of China, iPhone, National Security Agency, Security, United States

Visit 9to5Mac to find more special coverage of AAPL Company, iPhone, and china.

What do you think? Discuss "China accused of protectionism through new cybersecurity rules aimed at western tech companies" with our community.

Comments Off on China accused of protectionism through new cybersecurity rules aimed at western tech companies

Photo

Ben Lovejoy

January 29th

Apple

Mac

That Time the NSA Wrote “A Communist Christmas Carol”

That Time the NSA Wrote "A Communist Christmas Carol"

Did you ever wonder what A Christmas Carol might look like if the NSA wrote it during the Cold War? And replaced all the characters with Communist icons? Well wonder no longer!

Read more...








Comments Off on That Time the NSA Wrote “A Communist Christmas Carol”

Photo

Matt Novak on Paleofuture, shared by Meg Neal to Gizmodo

December 4th

Uncategorized

Chinese government’s war on Apple escalates as it bans govt purchases

businessinsider

After a Chinese state-run TV channel last month described the iPhone as a “national security concern” (a claim Apple denied), Bloomberg reports that the Chinese government has stepped up its war on Apple by removing the company’s products from its procurement lists.

Ten Apple products — including the iPad, iPad Mini, MacBook Air and MacBook Pro — were omitted from a final government procurement list distributed in July, according to officials who read it and asked not to be identified because the information isn’t public. The models were on a June version of the list drafted by the National Development and Reform Commission and Ministry of Finance, the officials said …

The claimed reason for the omission is that Apple has not satisfied the government that its products meet energy-saving requirements, but the effect is that Apple products can no longer be purchased by any government departments in the country, national or local.

Apple was targeted simply by virtue of being a foreign company achieving a great deal of sales success in the country, said Mark Po, an analyst with UOB Kay Hian Ltd.

The Chinese government wants to make sure that overseas companies shouldn’t have too much influence in China.

China is a hugely important market to Apple, with financial data revealing that the country accounted for a full 15 percent of the company’s revenues at the beginning of the year. Apple plans to expand its presence in the country after recently opening the 12th Chinese Apple Store.

Apple is not the only U.S. company to be hit, with Microsoft also in the firing line as the government banned purchases of Windows 8 products.

It’s believed that the U.S. government is the real target, China upset by Edward Snowden’s claim that the NSA was spying on Chinese leaders and suggested that U.S. tech firms were assisting these efforts by allowing access to their data.

(Photo via Reuters/Kim Kyung-Hoon)


Filed under: AAPL Company Tagged: AAPL, Apple, Apple China, china, edward snowden, iPad, iPhone, MacBook Air, Microsoft, National Security Agency

For more news on AAPL Company, Apple, and iPhone continue reading at 9to5Mac.

What do you think? Discuss "Chinese government’s war on Apple escalates as it bans govt purchases" with our community.

Comments Off on Chinese government’s war on Apple escalates as it bans govt purchases

Photo

Ben Lovejoy

August 6th

Apple

Mac

Apple responds to iOS backdoor access claims, denies its existence

Screen Shot 2014-07-21 at 5.18.07 PM

Over the weekend, iOS security hacker Jonathan Zdziarski released a presentation claiming to show how Apple had purposefully made backdoor access points for a variety of system and user data on iOS devices, that would usually be locked and encrypted via the passcode. The legitimacy of the claims is still questionable.

Apple has now commented on the matter, unsurprisingly denying any misconduct. Apple reiterates its previous statement: ‘Apple has never worked with any government agency from any country to create a backdoor in any of our products or services’.

The comment says that the information exposed in the presentation is used for diagnostics purposes by “IT departments, developers and Apple” for debugging. According to Apple, this data is never transferred without explicit consent.


Filed under: AAPL Company Tagged: Apple, backdoor, Forensic science, iOS, iPad, iPhone, Jonathan Zdziarski, National Security Agency

For more news on AAPL Company, Apple, and iPhone continue reading at 9to5Mac.

What do you think? Discuss "Apple responds to iOS backdoor access claims, denies its existence" with our community.

Comments Off on Apple responds to iOS backdoor access claims, denies its existence

Photo

Benjamin Mayo

July 22nd

Apple

Mac

Chinese state TV annoyed by NSA, takes it out on Apple

The WSJ reports that the state-run China Central TV has described the iPhone as a “national security concern” due to its location-tracking capabilities.

In its national noon broadcast, state-run China Central Television criticized the “frequent locations” function in Apple’s iOS 7 mobile operating system, which tracks and records the time and location of the owner’s movements. The report quoted researchers who said that those with access to that data could gain knowledge of the broader situation in China or “even state secrets” …

While CCTV may be ostensibly attacking Apple, its real target is the US Government. China has been increasingly hostile towards the U.S. since Edward Snowden claimed last year that the NSA was was spying on Chinese leaders and suggested that U.S. tech firms were assisting these efforts by allowing access to their data.

The broadcast on Friday cited the Snowden disclosures and called U.S. technology firms’ databases a “gold mine.” It also quoted officials who said that China needed stronger data protection laws, and that Apple would need to “take on any legal responsibilities” if any data leaks cause harm.

Apple and other tech companies last year denied that they allowed the NSA access to their servers, though security researchers noted that the wording of those denials appeared to allow for the possibility of indirect access.

It had also been suggested that the NSA had complete access to early iPhones, including both microphone and camera, and that exploit used may have been with Apple’s cooperation – a claim refuted by Tim Cook.

While the claim that location tracking is a threat to national security may be silly, that doesn’t mean that Apple won’t be forced to respond in some way. Tim Cook last year apologized to Chinese customers over warranty issues raised by Chinese state media despite there being no apparent substance to the claims.

Photo credit: Reuters


Filed under: AAPL Company Tagged: AAPL, Apple, Apple China, china, China Central Television, edward snowden, iPhone, National Security Agency, NSA, PRISM, United States

Check out 9to5Mac for more breaking coverage of AAPL Company, Apple, and iPhone.

What do you think? Discuss "Chinese state TV annoyed by NSA, takes it out on Apple" with our community.

Comments Off on Chinese state TV annoyed by NSA, takes it out on Apple

Photo

Ben Lovejoy

July 11th

Apple

Mac
line
February 2016
M T W T F S S
« Jan    
1234567
891011121314
15161718192021
22232425262728
29