Apple’s WWDC 2021 announcements on Monday showed that Apple’s privacy strategy is now part of its products: Privacy was mentioned as part of nearly every new feature, and received its own slot in the company’s keynote address. New features include ways to stop email tracking, burner emails, and a VPN competitor that obscures IP addresses.
Apple unveiled new versions of its operating systems on Monday which showed that the company’s focus on privacy has taken a new turn. It’s not just a corporate ideal or a marketing point anymore. It’s now a major initiative across Apple distinguishing its products from Android and Windows competition.
Privacy-focused features and apps announced by Apple on Monday for forthcoming operating systems iOS 15 or MacOS Monterey included:
• No tracking pixels. The Mail app will now run images through proxy servers to defeat tracking pixels that tell email marketers when and where messages were opened.
• Private Relay. Subscribers to Apple’s iCloud storage service will get a feature called iCloud+ which includes Private Relay, a service that hides user IP addresses, which are often used to infer location. An Apple representative said it’s not a virtual private network, a type of service often used by privacy-sensitive people to access web content in areas where it’s restricted. Instead, Apple will pass web traffic through both an Apple server and a proxy server run by a third party to strip identifying information.
• Hide My Email. iCloud subscribers will be able to create and use temporary, anonymous email addresses, sometimes called burner addresses, inside the Mail app.
• App Privacy Report. Inside the iPhones settings, Apple will tell you which servers apps connect to, shining light on apps that collect data and send it to third parties the user doesn’t recognize. It will also tell users how often the apps use the microphone and camera.
Americans also say that privacy is factoring into buying decisions. A Pew study from 2020 said that 52% of Americans decided not to use a product or service because of concerns over data protection.
MacDailyNews Take: Average consumers finally seem to be waking up to how “free” services work and what using them actually costs.
Smart people who are concerned with protecting their privacy use Apple products. Certainly not Google and/or Facebook. — MacDailyNews, September 26, 2018