“Under His Eye,” she says. The right farewell. “Under His Eye,” I reply, and she gives a little nod.
We all agree with and support efforts to fight crime. But the pre-digital equivalent of Apple's plan is this: a police officer enters your home every night, walks to the bookcase, pulls out your family photo albums, looks through page after page and runs comparisons with whatever he has in his database. These are your personal family photos: children playing, intimate moments with your significant other, embarrassing selfies, etc. The police officer keeps copies of all of the photos too. Forever.
Q1: How does this fight crime?
Q2: How does this not violate 4A ? "The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures."
Q3: What in the world gives the government and a private corporation the right to look through my family photos ?
When the government says "if you have nothing to hide, you have nothing to fear" you gotta remind them that "privacy isn't about hiding, it's about protecting." And "the right to be secure in your person" is all about protecting yourself. If the government argues that scanning through my family photo albums and keeping copies forever is not an "unreasonable search and seizure" then maybe somebody should do something to stop this techno-fascism.
I've been an Apple customer since the IIc and have had every iPhone they've ever made, along with too many other of their products to count.
I find it intolerable that they would presume to violate my privacy in this way.
It's been a good run, but I think it is time to begin the transition to an Ubuntu laptop and a secure phone.
Steve Jobs must be rolling in his grave.
The problem here is that we, with our shared mindsets and grave concerns, are very much in the minority. As a teacher, and with kids myself, I can attest to the fact that the younger generation, (the ones who in sum own more of the poisoned apples than we do) really don't give a toss. They aren't taught properly about slavery or loss of liberty in the school curriculum in ANY country, so they can't conceive of any apparatus of control, especially not in the guise of their beloved latest spyphone 12! Whether China, UK, India, USA, governments who are supposed to work FOR us, as our servants, in fact work against us alongside their corporate allies. So, while we all appreciate the gravity of the brilliant Mr Snowden's latest revelation, and collectively baulk at his disclosure, I just wonder what the hell we can actually DO about this situation, given our relatively mature age and modest number? (This isn't meant to be a rhetorical question!)
How soon before not owning a smart-phone becomes grounds for state persecution?
"You don't have a mobile-device? What do you have to hide, sir? How are you able to work and process payments without one? Do you admit you're retaining cash contraband? I'm sorry to say that your appeal to the 5th Amendment, sir, amounts to probable cause. If you had been receiving security updates you would have known that. I'm afraid we need to bring you in for questioning. Don't worry about your young family; we'll send an automated detachment to watch over them while you're incapacitated for improvements. Once your body has been augmented with an internal nano-bio iPhone mesh you'll be released and allowed to return home. Sorry for the confusion."
I wish i could find my way out of the Apple ecosystem. My MacBook, IPad and phone are all tied to tether with my AirPods that broadcast my every thought. Android seems like a horrible answer. Any ideas where to go next. I’m waiting for answers not because I have anything to hide but because it is just wrong. Pre Crime and precogs are not just for the movies anymore. Planting images seems to easy now. This is a greased pig of a slippery slope. Help Ed.
Dear God. This is a masterpiece. Thank you sir. Never been more terrified and informed before now.
What should happen here is a mass exodus from Apple's products and ecosystem.
What is more likely is that it will have little impact on their market share.
A market economy makes it relatively easy to chose an alternative but unfortunately this may be the start of a trend of monitoring across various brands of devices.
We need hardware and OS alternatives that prioritise the user. Your phone should work for you not the other way around.
What to do?
1. Among my friends I became the alien in terms of the phone I'm using. Last year I ditched my eyephone, bought a Pixel, rooted it and installed GrapheneOS. It works quite well (I also tried a pinephone with linux, but that simply is not ready yet).
2. I always think twice wether or not to take the phone with me when leaving the house.
3. No cloud (is an actual possibility)
4. But then, convincing my teenage kids to do the same is an actual impossibility. My oldest one starts to comprehend...
5. Carefully choose the media you consume
6. A paper diary might be a good thing to support your memory instead of the abundant pictures by your camera. I wrote down, when my kids said / did something I wanted to remember.
I am deeply thankful for your initiative! It is a cultural mission.
Greetings from Zurich
Its so depressing, because it feels like the ship has already sailed and there is not much that can effectively be done (if one doesn't want to down the ship entirely). Stricter laws? Look at GDPR, is it Really limiting big tech much? Not really. LGPD? New Privacy law in China? Same. US? Laughably behind. CCPA is no deterrent at all. Has not teeth.
But the scariest thought is that maybe the children that are growing up now will not only Not know any other world but perhaps they will Not care if privacy effectively does not exist anymore.
Which makes me think, what change (if any) can be really carried out and how, if not enough people want it? What can we do if there is not enough of us who believe privacy is a basic human right? And I ask that as a privacy lawyer.
Really terrified by this announcement and I am very glad that you wrote this article. This is a very important issue that should not be shrugged off with a “well they are a private company that can do what they want and you agreed to their user policy” argument. The idea that they are standing behind the shield of “don’t you want to catch people who abuse children” defense is slimy as hell, and I am a survivor of childhood sexual abuse! This idea that if you have nothing to hide then you shouldn’t be upset is ridiculous. That’s literally what they said in Europe when randomly searching a person’s house. I thought it was those kind of infractions that led to the American Revolution and the writing of our Constitution in the first place.
America is quickly becoming the very picture of what we thought was happening behind the “Iron Curtain”. We allow the government and private corporations to spy on us. We are debating whether or not we should have to prove our vaccination status, quite literally adopting a “show me your papers” State. The ideas that led to our founding have all but disappeared.
I am an Apple customer and I am outraged! What on earth can be done? What kind of phone or computer can safely be used anymore? Society has been pushed onto the internet to the point where you have to have a computer or smartphone in order to do business. Speaking about protecting children, is this really the future that we want for them (and us)?
“Brave New World” is already a reality. Huxley desperately tried to warn us, but we thought that couldn’t happen here. Wow, how blind that assumption was.
Thank you for continuing to speak out on these and other issues Ed! You really are an American hero. It is so ironic that you found your freedom in Russia (I know they are far from perfect too). Keep shedding the light on these important issues! If you think of solutions, there are people who would follow your lead.
How long do you think it takes for Google to announce the same back door on Android? This is the beginning of the end for privacy for all of us. Time to get a Linux phone!
Apple has already set up the infrastructure to do the same thing on macOS too. In 2018 Apple phased out classic Kernel Extensions and instead provided Network Extensions (nExt) for apps controlling network traffic, such as LuLu.
But then in October 2020 an official "oversight" happened: some Apple apps, as well as system processes just bypassed the nExt, rendering Application Firewalls useless. Apple did revert that after a massive uproar, calming down the situation for the moment.
And now, less than a year later, their surveillance plans on iOS are firmly moving forward. It is only a matter of time until some Apple processes will bypass nExt control on mac OS to "better protect us".
I don’t,and will never own a cell phone. Frustrating at times but why should I pay to be monitored and tracked. This is all just too much
I will be moving all of my family pictures from the i cloud to an external hard drive and chips as a back up. My next electronics purchases will be open sourced. I like the quality of apple products but hate their woke politics.
What phone should one be using at this point? Other than the obviously preferable "None"
"There are no people sadder but wiser about the scale and scope of the attack surface you get when you connect everything to everything and give up your prior ability to do without. Until such people are available, I will busy myself with reducing my dependence on, and thus my risk exposure to, the digital world even though that will be mistaken for curmudgeonly nostalgia."
Cybersecurity as Realpolitik
Black Hat 2014 Keynote