“You were in Vegas without me!?” Photo: Rob LeFebvre/Cult of Mac
These days, any photo you shoot with your iPhone or other smartphone will typically contain location data (unless you have that feature turned off) to allow apps like iPhoto to place your images on a map.
Even photo-sharing services use this data, with some — like Flickr — posting it prominently on your photo pages (along with all the other EXIF data, like shutter speed and f-stop).
If you don’t want the location of your photos to be known, the Yosemite version of OS X’s Preview can take care of it for you. Let’s strip that location data before we post that photo to the Web, OK?
Don’t let online hackers get into your home … directory. Photo: Scott Schiller/Flickr CC Flickr
We all make compromises daily when it comes to online security. Everybody wants to be safe and secure when making purchases online, but practically none of us do everything necessary to keep our data secure.
“People, myself included, are basically lazy,” web developer Joe Tortuga told Cult of Mac, “and ease of use is inversely related to security. If it’s too difficult, then people just won’t do it.”
With all the recent hacks into private as well as corporate data — like the credit card grab from Home Depot and the hack into Sony’s files, there’s no better time to learn some of the things we all can do to protect ourselves. We spoke to some online security experts to get their advice.
On the other hand, every time you type in Spotlight, your location and local search terms are sent to Apple, and, according to developer Landon Fuller, other third parties like Microsoft.
Fuller’s created a website, Fix Mac OS X Yosemite, where he’s posted up a way to stop Yosemite from sending such private data out. He’s also been contributing to a developer project on GitHub to find out and fix other ways that OS X phones home.
“On devices running iOS 8, your personal data such as photos, messages (including attachments), email, contacts, call history, iTunes content, notes, and reminders is placed under the protection of your passcode,” Apple notes on its website. “Unlike our competitors, Apple cannot bypass your passcode and therefore cannot access this data. So it’s not technically feasible for us to respond to government warrants for the extraction of this data from devices in their possession running iOS 8.”
The second part of Tim Cook’s interview with Charlie Rose is scheduled to air tonight on PBS, and as a teaser the show has released a short video of the CEO explaining that Apple’s stance on user privacy and company transparency is basically to never become like Google.
“You are not our product,” says Cook. “I think everyone has to ask, ‘How do companies make their money?’ Follow the money. And if they’re making money mainly by collecting gobs of personal data, I think you have a right to be worried and you should really understand what’s happening with that data.”
The idea behind Secret is that you can share anything to your social circle with the comfort of total anonymity. Users’ identities are kept hidden, and that’s what’s supposed to make the app enjoyable or whatever.
As it turns out, it’s not that hard to see who someone actually is on Secret. The catch is that you need their email address.
Tim Cook in the crowd at a recent event with China Mobile, the largest carrier on earth.
After the Chinese media called iOS’s ability to track an iPhone’s location a “national security concern,” Apple has responded with a lengthy statement detailing its commitment to customer privacy.
Yesterday China’s state-run CCTV ran a segment heavily criticizing the “Frequent Locations” feature in iOS 7 that records where the device has been in detail on a map. The implications of the report were that Apple was sharing the data with other companies and governments.
Today Apple responded to the allegations by saying that it is “deeply committed to protecting the privacy of all our customers” and that it has never created a backdoor for any government agency.
There are few companies you can trust with your private data ever since the revelations leaked by Edward Snowden shook the tech world last year, but according to the latest report from the Electronic Frontier Foundation, our iPhone-making friends in Cupertino have gone from being a privacy chump to the people’s champ in just a year.