Tim Cook attacks Google, U.S. federal government over right to privacy abuses

“Apple chief executive Tim Cook has heavily criticised tech companies which attempt to monetise customer data for advertising purposes, saying such a trade comes at ‘a very high cost,'” Rhiannon Willams reports for The Telegraph. “While Cook did not explicitly identify the companies, his assertion that some of Silicon Valley’s most prominent and successful companies ‘have built their businesses by lulling their customers into complacency about their personal information’ can be read as referring to Facebook and Google, who use targeted advertising and store vast amounts of user data.”

“Speaking by video link during EPIC’s Champions of Freedom event in Washington upon being honoured by the research centre for corporate leadership, Cook said he and his team at Apple firmly believed customers should not have to compromise between privacy and security,” Willams reports. “‘We can, and we must provide both in equal measure,” he said. “‘We believe that people have a fundamental right to privacy. The American people demand it, the constitution demands it, morality demands it.'”

I’m speaking to you from Silicon Valley, where some of the most prominent and successful companies have built their businesses by lulling their customers into complacency about their personal information. They’re gobbling up everything they can learn about you and trying to monetise it. We think that’s wrong. And it’s not the kind of company that Apple wants to be… We believe the customer should be in control of their own information. You might like these so-called free services, but we don’t think they’re worth having your email, your search history and now even your family photos data mined and sold off for god knows what advertising purpose. And we think some day, customers will see this for what it is. — Apple CEO Tim Cook, June 2, 2015

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: We agree 100% with everything Cook is saying, but the fact remains, that far too many people simply don’t get it and Apple should respond by making their services more attractive via better features* and more competitive prices or they will lose customers to Google in photo management and storage.

Cook doth protest much, likely because he sees paying iCloud photo storage accounts being closed in the wake of Google’s Photos launch.

Hey, Tim: If Google is so bad, why is it still the default search engine on any of your products?

*Google Photos is creepy and we’d never use it due to massive privacy concerns, but our tests have shown that it can automatically create interesting, fun, and coherent animations, collages and more with aplomb; in fact, Apple should be embarrassed. Hopefully, this spurs Apple to do a much better job with their own photo services. Start copying some of these features, Apple. We’d love to use them in a safe, secure environment where our photos aren’t being mined for marketing data.


The price you’ll pay for Google’s ‘free’ photo storage – June 3, 2015
Apple CEO Tim Cook champions privacy, blasts ‘so-called free services’ – June 3, 2015
Passing on Google Photos for iOS: Read the fine print before you sign up for Google’s new Photos service – June 1, 2015
Why Apple’s Photos beats Google Photos, despite price and shortcomings – May 30, 2015
Is Apple is losing the photo wars? – May 29, 2015
How Google aims to delve deeper into users’ lives – May 29, 2015
Apple CEO Cook: Unlike some other companies, Apple won’t invade your right to privacy – March 2, 2015
Survey: People trust U.S. NSA more than Google – October 29, 2014
Apple CEO Tim Cook ups privacy to new level, takes direct swipe at Google – September 18, 2014
Apple will no longer unlock most iPhones, iPads for government, police – even with search warrants – September 18, 2014
U.S. NSA watching, tracking phone users with Google Maps – January 28, 2014
U.S. NSA secretly infiltrated Yahoo, Google data centers worldwide, Snowden documents say – October 30, 2013
Google has already inserted some U.S. NSA code into Android – July 10, 2013
Court rules NSA doesn’t have to reveal its semi-secret relationship with Google – May 22, 2013
Edward Snowden’s privacy tips: ‘Get rid of Dropbox,” avoid Facebook and Google – October 13, 2014

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