Apple to begin notifying users of info requests from law enforcement

By Cody Lee on May 2, 2014

According to a new report from The Washington Post tonight, Apple will join Google and other high-profile companies in updating their privacy policy to routinely notify users when a government or law enforcement agency requests information on them.

The move should appease user privacy rights activists, who believe it’s unlawful for a government agency to have the power to access user data so discretely. The Justice Department, however, is concerned that the new routine could threaten investigations… Read More


Timing of SSL bug fuels conspiracy theories about Apple and the NSA

By Cody Lee on Feb 24, 2014

By now you’ve probably already heard about the SSL bug that was discovered in iOS and OS X. Apple pushed an iOS update out on Friday to fix it, and it didn’t sound like a big deal at the time, but we have since learned that it is an extremely serious security flaw.

The flaw leaves Apple devices open to what’s called a man-in-the-middle attack, in where a malicious program poses as a trusted website to intercept communications or inject malware. And its existence has fueled conspiracy theories about Apple and the NSA… Read More


Tim Cook says NSA would have to “cart us out in a box” for server access

By Cody Lee on Jan 24, 2014

We’re still a few hours away from ABC airing David Muir’s interview with Tim Cook, but the network has been leaking tidbits of the discussion all day. Earlier we saw a clip of Cook talking about Apple’s new sapphire plant in Arizona, and now this.

ABC has posted another preview of tonight’s Cook interview. This time the CEO answers questions about Apple’s position on the recent NSA surveillance scandal, saying the Agency would have to “cart us out in a box” to gain access to their servers… Read More


Apple denies knowledge of NSA’s iPhone program

By Cody Lee on Dec 31, 2013

Yesterday, a trove of secret documents was released regarding the NSA and its ongoing spying on citizens both abroad and here in the US. One of the programs mentioned, called DROPOUTJEEP, is particularly scary as it can give the Agency complete control of any iPhone.

These are some pretty serious allegations made against the NSA and maybe more-so Apple, who either has several unknown security holes in its mobile OS or is consciously giving the NSA access. Well the company just responded to these claims, and it appears to be the former… Read More


Leaked documents show the NSA can gain nearly complete access to your iPhone

By Cody Lee on Dec 30, 2013

In June of this year, Edward Snowden shocked the world by leaking a number of slides and documents and revealing that the NSA has backdoor access to the databases of 9 major tech companies, including Apple and Facebook. But as it turns out, its access may not be limited to software.

Since Snowden’s initial outing, there has been a number of subsequent reports and leaks. And the latest to garner gasps from the security community is that the NSA has the ability to intercept the delivery of a new computer or mobile device—including iPhones—and build in a remote backdoor… Read More


Short video from Obama’s recent meeting with Tim Cook and other tech execs

By Cody Lee on Dec 17, 2013

As we reported yesterday, Tim Cook and a number of other executives from prominent tech companies met with US President Barack Obama at the White House to discuss a wide range of government and tech-related topics.

Among the topics were said to be the recent struggles with the rollout of the website and privacy concerns regarding government surveillance. And this afternoon, a short video of the meeting surfaced on the web… Read More


President Obama meeting with Tim Cook and others over NSA and health care website

By Cody Lee on Dec 16, 2013

The White House has announced that President Obama is scheduled to meet with a number of tech executives tomorrow to discuss a wide range of subjects. Two of the big topics on the menu are said to be the NSA and the troubled website.

In addition, the group—which includes Apple CEO Tim Cook, Twitter’s Dick Costolo, Netflix’s Reed Hastings, and Dropbox’s Drew Houston—will discuss ways the Obama administration can partner with the tech sector to create new jobs and grow the economy… Read More


Apple joins major U.S. tech giants in NSA surveillance reform push

By Christian Zibreg on Dec 9, 2013

The U.S. government’s mass-scale surveillance program which has compromised the security and privacy of millions of domestic and foreign online users, the secret PRISM initiative, did not sit well with Apple and other technology giants. In response to the scandalous revelations by the NSA contractor Edward Snowden that also put the blame on Silicon Valley giants for bowing to NSA’s request and providing the agency with hassle-free access to its users’ data, the iPhone maker chastised the practice and published how it handles government requests to give up private information belonging to its users.

And now, in the aftermath of the ongoing snooping scare, The Wall Street Journal is reporting that Apple along with seven other U.S. technology giants is making a joint appeal to reform government surveillance activities… Read More


President Obama outlines four government surveillance reform initiatives

By Cody Lee on Aug 9, 2013

Following a series of meetings with tech executives a government leaders this week, President Obama held a press conference this morning to describe his plan to assuage concerns among Americans and foreigners regarding the legality of US surveillance activities.

During his speech, the President said that the surveillance programs in use by government agencies right now are “operating in a way that prevents abuse.” But the question for his administration, he posed, is how does it make “American people more comfortable?”

So he outlined the following four initiatives… Read More


President Obama meets with Tim Cook and other tech execs to talk surveillance

By Cody Lee on Aug 9, 2013

According to a report from Politico, President Barack Obama met with Apple CEO Tim Cook and a number of other tech executives yesterday for a closed-door discussion on government surveillance. The site says this was the second meeting of its kind this week.

Cook was joined by the likes of AT&T CEO Randall Stephenson, Google’s chief Internet evangelist Vint Cerf, and Public Knowledge President Gigi Sohn, to talk about various surveillance strategies and tother topics such as the recent NSA PRISM program scandal… Read More


NSA’s Internet snooping covers ‘nearly everything’ done online via XKeyscore app

By Ed Sutherland on Jul 31, 2013

The men and women of the U.S. National Security Agency are very interested in your Internet activity. Indeed, a program within the NSA allows intelligence analysts to sift through billions of online records, revealing “nearly everything a typical user does on the Internet.”

While Apple has denied it assists the intelligence agency with tracking the Internet use of consumers, the NSA’s XKeyscore program can search your emails, chat logs, web history – even your Facebook activity in real time, The Guardian newspaper reports Wednesday… Read More


U.S. agency offers code-of-conduct for apps collecting user data

By Ed Sutherland on Jul 26, 2013

Are you concerned about the personal data collected by various mobile apps? A U.S. government agency feels your pain, sort of. The National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) has issued a draft of a voluntary code of conduct it hopes will improve user privacy.

Although the NTIA is an arm of the same government rifling through your emails and other Internet activities, the agency head modestly called the voluntary guidelines a “seminal milestone” in protecting mobile privacy… Read More


US government gets approval to continue tracking phone records

By Cody Lee on Jul 19, 2013

In June, an order granted by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court to the FBI leaked, revealing that Verizon was handing over millions of private telephone records to the US government. Of course, we later found out that it wasn’t just Verizon giving up user data.

As you may have known, that court order was set to expire today, meaning that the government would no longer be authorized to collect such records. But according to the office of the Director of National Intelligence, FISA has just renewed its authorization… Read More


Pirate Bay co-founder touts ‘secret’ messaging app

By Ed Sutherland on Jul 10, 2013

So, you want to order a pizza or text sweet nothings to your significant other without the NSA listening? The co-founder of The Pirate Bay, known for swapping illicit copies of movies and software, has a secret – literally. Peter Sunde is raising funds for Hemlis (Swedish for “secret”), a new kind of messaging app for iOS and Android he and his team are working on. They boldly claim the software is designed to keep out the most prying eyes, such as those from the U.S. government’s PRISM program… Read More


Apple posts open letter regarding PRISM accusations and customer privacy

By Cody Lee on Jun 17, 2013

Apple has just issued a statement regarding its customer privacy policy, following accusations that it is involved in a US government-run PRISM program that offers up user data without warrant. It’s already commented on the situation, but it obviously felt it needed to be more clear.

Tonight the company posted an open letter to its website entitled ‘Apple’s Commitment to Customer Privacy.’ The letter reiterates that Apple knew nothing about the so-called PRISM program, and offers insight into its relationship with the government and what it means for users… Read More


Apple and Tim Cook getting sued over NSA’s PRISM intelligence program

By Christian Zibreg on Jun 12, 2013

The controversy over National Security Agency data mining isn’t going away anytime soon. As you know, the scandal blew up when it was discovered that the government issued a secret order to Verizon Business Network Services to provide the NSA with logs for millions of calls on an ongoing daily basis.

Numerous lawsuits are being announced with each passing day and some have already been filed. For example, the American Civil Liberties Union has filed a lawsuit and Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) said he will sue the Obama administration over the “unconstitutional” PRISM surveillance programs.

And now, an activist group is suing Apple and Tim Cook, as well as Facebook, Google, YouTube, Skype, AT&T, Sprint, Yahoo, Microsoft, PalTalk, AOL, the NSA and its Director Keith Alexander, President Obama himself and Attorney General Eric Holder over participating in the government’s secret Big Brother initiative… Read More