Tim Cook: If Data Privacy Isn't Addressed, the Problem 'Gets So Large It May Be Impossible to Fix'

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by MacRumors, Oct 24, 2018.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot


    Apr 12, 2001

    Apple CEO Tim Cook recently sat down for an interview with CNN, where he discussed privacy, the controversial Bloomberg story claiming Apple was hacked via tiny chips embedded in server motherboards, and why he opted to come out as gay.

    On privacy law, Cook said that while he's "not a pro regulation kind of person," there are instances when the free market doesn't work and it's necessary to "take an action." Privacy, says Cook, is one of the top issues of this century, and if we don't address it now, "the problem gets so large it may be impossible to fix.

    Cook went on to say that this is an issue that's much broader than the tech industry because there are many firms out there collecting data. Privacy law is "critical to every country in the world."

    According to Cook, his position is that the user should be completely in control of their data in a very transparent manner. "Your data is yours," said Cook.

    On the topic of Bloomberg, Cook once again called on the news site to retract its story suggesting the Chinese government planted microchips in the Supermicro servers that it used in its data centers.
    Cook said that the fact that the Apple portion of the article is untrue "casts doubt on the broader story," and he pointed out that Amazon has also made comments denying the truth of what Bloomberg reported.
    On the topic of being gay and the Trump Administration's plan to introduce narrow definitions for gender at birth that would impact transgender rights, Cook said that he strongly believes everyone should be treated with dignity and respect, a statement he's repeated time and time again.

    Cook said that he himself came out as being gay several years ago to inspire young people who were bullied and mistreated for their sexual orientation.
    Cook's interview with CNN followed his appearance at the 40th International Conference of Data Protection and Privacy Commissioners, where he spoke passionately on the need for strong data protection laws in the United States.

    Cook's full comments to CNN can be watched across several videos published by the site: on privacy, on Bloomberg, and on being gay.

    Note: Due to the political nature of the discussion regarding this topic, the discussion thread is located in our Politics, Religion, Social Issues forum. All forum members and site visitors are welcome to read and follow the thread, but posting is limited to forum members with at least 100 posts.

    Article Link: Tim Cook: If Data Privacy Isn't Addressed, the Problem 'Gets So Large It May Be Impossible to Fix'
  2. Tapiture macrumors 65816


    Oct 1, 2016
    Of the “big four” tech companies (Apple, Amazon, Google, Facebook), Apple is probably the one with the most respect for customer’s data, and I think that integrity is part of the reason they’ll continue to be so successful.
  3. Porco macrumors 68030


    Mar 28, 2005
    I may not be super-happy with everything Apple do with their products (because I care), but I am really pleased Apple, and Cook, takes many of the political and ethical positions they do on the stuff mentioned here. I don't take it for granted, and I don't think Apple are perfect, but I don't see the same commitment to privacy or human rights from any of their competitors, across all the products categories in which they compete.

    It's a precious thing that we have such a dominant company with these views, I just hope it's enough, and that Apple keep fighting the good fight.
  4. shareef777 Suspended


    Jul 26, 2005
    Chicago, IL
    Cook is a good guy and a great leader/businessmen. Just not a product visionary like Jobs was. Then again, don't think we've ever seen a product visionary like Jobs since his passing. Closest person I can think of right now would be Musk.
  5. Cosmosent macrumors 6502a

    Apr 20, 2016
    La Jolla, CA
    RE: "if we don't address it now, "the problem gets so large it may be impossible to fix."

    That's precisely how many App Devs feel about the iOS App Store !
  6. AngerDanger macrumors 601


    Dec 9, 2008
    Bloomberg must be digging the free publicity.
  7. macduke macrumors G4


    Jun 27, 2007
    Central U.S.
    Every day we are seeing the horrific downsides to giving away our private data. Apple will be on the right side of history. I'm glad that Tim Cook is putting himself out there to lead the fight for privacy. Meanwhile the cowards at Google hid away in their playground campus not even bothering to show up when the Senate asked them to testify:

  8. duervo macrumors 68020


    Feb 5, 2011
    That picture of Tim Cook prevents me from taking this seriously, because all I see is this:

  9. Rhonindk macrumors 68040


    Oct 3, 2014
    sitting on a beach watching a DC simulation ...
    How disingenuous.
    Please define "Your Data". I just look at my 8+.
    I have lots of personal data on it. I do a lot of personal communicating on it. I take personal photos and videos on it. I create, consume, research and play on it.
    I have lots of school data on it. I do a lot of school communicating on it. I take school photos and videos on it. I create, consume, research and play on it.
    I have lots of work data on it. I do a lot of work communicating on it. I take work photos and videos on it. I create, consume, research and play on it.

    Now on this device, what is "My Data"? Who "owns" it? Who should have access to it?

    Then I look at my Razer (personal phone). Same applies excluding work. Though I do get some there too. So in reality it does apply.

    It is by far not as simplistic nor as clear cut as TC would make it sound. :cool:
  10. Superhappytree, Oct 24, 2018
    Last edited: Oct 24, 2018

    Superhappytree macrumors 6502a


    Sep 10, 2015
    I don't like many of Apple's decisions since Jobs death and feel that their overall quality has dipped in both hardware and software (especially given the higher prices these days), but this is one thing Jobs would be geniunely proud of and one thing that Cook has not only maintained but actually strengthened, that and their continued environmental efforts.
  11. Naraxus macrumors 6502a


    Oct 13, 2016
    Good ol Timmy. Always talking tough on privacy when in front of a camera yet behind the scenes it's little more than lip-service to him.
  12. unobtainium macrumors 68020

    Mar 27, 2011
    Good for Tim and good for Apple. Of course consumer data just happens to be the currency of Apple’s biggest corporate rival Google, and Apple just happens to be in the hardware business more so than the data business.

    Corporations — even Apple — are not altruistic and are not our friends. Apple is as profit-motivated as any other corporation, and it really shouldn’t be up to corporations to advocate for consumer privacy (lol?) That’s what democracy is for. We need regulations put in place by our government representatives, who unfortunately no longer represent the majority of Americans.
  13. BODYBUILDERPAUL macrumors 65816

    Feb 9, 2009
    True respect for Tim Cook. One of the few 'humans' in the world of business.
    Probably the first businessman that I have respect for.
  14. Defthand macrumors 65816

    Sep 1, 2010
    Who is Cook citing when he vaguely mentions that there are "nefarious examples" of privacy exploits? He'd love for you to assume that Google is who he is referring to. Frankly, the only reported examples I can recall were done by hackers and app developers, not Google and other legitimate data aggregators.
  15. Moi Ici macrumors regular

    Sep 21, 2012
    this is why I will continue to purchase Apple products.
  16. Saipher macrumors demi-god


    Oct 25, 2014

    What? :rolleyes:
  17. bbeagle macrumors 68040


    Oct 19, 2010
    Buffalo, NY
    Yes, it is.

    Anything you do on your phone is YOURS - until you let someone else access it.

    The WORK or SCHOOL WORK you do on your phone is YOURS until you intentionally send it to work or school. Any photos you take are YOURS until you intentionally send them out to facebook/twitter/etc.

    The point is that you should be responsible by INTENTIONALLY transferring things like photos. Just by logging into facebook shouldn't give facebook the right to download all your photos to their servers. You should be in control.
  18. H2SO4 macrumors 601

    Nov 4, 2008
    "I will spend my last dying breath if I need to, and I will spend every penny of Apple’s $40 billion in the bank, to right this wrong,” Jobs said. “I’m going to destroy Android, because it’s a stolen product. I’m willing to go thermonuclear war on this.”
    Owned by Google who was also the default choice for search engines and no doubt a great choice for analytics and loads of other stuff. Steve was a liar, so is/was Tim and so are most people.
    Principles are only noble when steadfastly you adhere to them Tim you hypocrite.

    Privacy is great yet we give it away when it suits us.
    Gossip, usually at odds with privacy. Loads of us do it.
    Company secrets, again privacy. Most people wouldn't think twice about stealing or passing on things they shouldn't or reading the whole of an email received in error.

    None of those companies are respectful, they only want us to think they are. Though you did say, with the most respect for, so maybe I'll give you that.
  19. ThunderSkunk, Oct 24, 2018
    Last edited: Oct 24, 2018

    ThunderSkunk macrumors 68030


    Dec 31, 2007
    Milwaukee Area
    Tim is engaging in some magical thinking. Proceeding thoughtfully and taking a careful nuanced approach with well-considered precautions and limits to build toward a technological future while respecting, preserving & improving civil liberties and human dignity in general, sounds great, but is the complete opposite of this countries interests, motivations, incentives, values, or capabilities.

    It’s the 21st century. Humans are an expendable resource and have no value beyond the monetization of their work output and the sum of their purchasing power. Like it or not, that is the distilling of millennias of culture this country has chosen every step of the way. If Tim wants Apple to exist ina more ideal society, perhaps Apple should build its own movable, submersible island country at sea, because that’s more likely than waiting for a means of intelligent decision making from the existing old countries on land.
  20. Greymacuser macrumors 6502


    Jul 31, 2012
    "Cook said that while he's "not a pro regulation kind of person,""
    Are you kidding me?
    Your hardware is based on regulation to the point where we can't upgrade it, service it, repair it, or use 3rd party components of superior quality.
    Plus, try having a political opinion that differs from him on the App store. He just "curates" you into oblivion.
    Sorry lil'Timmy. You're just plain slimy.
  21. MacBH928 macrumors 68040


    May 17, 2008
    Although I trust Apple more than others,
    I do feel that we are in a time where you shouldn't create an account and use minimal services and trackers. There are options that can minimize your internet footprint like DuckDuckGo, FireFox, and ProtonMail. Its better to not let anything go through the internet...its just so dangerous now.

    There was a time where if someone hacked your account, at best he will get his hands on your saved emails. Today if someone hacks your Google account(or retrieves it-legally) he can get your forever: chat history, browsing history, search history, emails, location, contacts, phone call records, recorded phone calls, voice-print, files stored in the cloud, devices owned+software versions, your pictures+videos, even when and what you watch on TV and all of this includes your whole life social+work related material.

    Its just too dangerous to store that many things about you online.
  22. apolloa macrumors G4

    Oct 21, 2008
    Time, because it rules EVERYTHING!
    In other news Apple has added additional security chips to the Mac and iPhones, Apple claim this is for additional ‘privacy and security’ but third party repair companies have been totally locked out of repairing Apple products due to the new security hardware.
    Apple users are said to be furious they can only get their devices repaired by Apple and only until Apple deems them unworthy to repair....

    See where this is going yet?
  23. macjunk(ie) macrumors 6502a

    Aug 12, 2009
    I am really glad Tim came out - the one thing I like Tim for.
    It truly made a difference for all those who were being bullied for being different.
  24. topmounter macrumors 68020


    Jun 18, 2009
    FEMA Region VIII
    I'd say that 'Gets So Large It May Be Impossible to Fix' really means losing the trust of more and more consumers and having them curtail what they share and how they interact on-line. Over the last 3-4 years I've steadily pulled back starting with abandoning Facebook entirely and then moving on to reducing my interactions with other 'social' platforms, reducing my dependence on Google Services and in general treating 'on-line' as a digital sandbox, being far more conscientious about what information I place in that sandbox than I was, say, five years ago. It's definitely not a one time thing, but a continual process as new products and technologies are introduced and the companies that develop them (that you may trust today) are acquired by other companies (that you may not trust).

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