Apple takes user privacy very seriously. The company believes that privacy in software, hardware, and services is part of a user’s rights and should be valued as such.
Government Stories May 25
Government Stories May 16, 2016
As reported earlier, Apple CEO Tim Cook is visiting Beijing, China this week. The earlier Reuters report suggested Cook was intending to talk with government officials about company matters amidst increasing tensions between the country and Apple, following trademark disputes and the ban on iTunes Movies and iBooks content.
On Monday, though, Cook met with Chinese app developers at an Apple Store. The talk was hosted by Jean Lui, president of taxi company Didi Chuxing, of which Apple has invested $1 billion dollars. A plethora of Chinese app publishers were in attendance, including a Groupon-esque clone ‘Meituan’, photo app MeituPic, news provider Toutia.com, cooking app DayDayCook and game developer Tap4Fun (via CNBC).
Government Stories May 6, 2016
Reuters is reporting that Apple CEO Tim Cook will visit China later in May to meet with government officials and address current tensions between Apple and China, seen by many as the main driver of revenue growth for the company going forward.
Apple has faced some significant setbacks in China in the last few weeks. The company has had to stop selling iBooks and iTunes Movies in the region following new governmental policy that restricts online publishing. Apple also ceded exclusive rights to the iPhone trademark after losing a court case, although it plans to appeal.
Government Stories April 22, 2016
In an interview with the BBC on national British radio, Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak said that he believes Apple should pay 50% tax, along with all other companies. He said he doesn’t like the distinction of different rules between corporations and individuals.
Today, although Apple has never been found to evade tax or conduct illegal practices, it does not pay at top-rate tax, using a variety of financial engineering schemes to redirect profits elsewhere, such as Ireland, with significantly lower tax requirements.
Government Stories April 19, 2016
Apple had published its latest Transparency Report on Government Information Requests, covering the second half of last year. It revealed that it received over 30,000 requests last year, and complied with up to 82% of them. It is not allowed to specify the exact number of National Security Requests, but says they fell into the 1250-1499 band.
Apple breaks down the numbers by country, region and type of request. It says that most fall into what it terms device requests. Apple’s compliance here ranges from 52% in EMEA (Europe, Middle East, Africa) and India, to 80% in the USA.
The vast majority of the requests we receive from law enforcement relate to information about lost or stolen devices, and we report these as device requests. Device requests may include requests for customer contact information provided to register a device with Apple or the date(s) the device used Apple services. We count devices based on the individual serial or IMEI numbers related to an investigation. We encourage any customer who suspects their device is stolen to contact their local law enforcement agency.
Of perhaps greater interest are account requests, where the government is asking for information ranging from names and addresses to copies of iCloud backups …
Government Stories February 18, 2016
Following Apple’s refusal to unlock an iPhone 5c used by one of the San Bernardino gunmen, the Wall Street Journal reports that the Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Richard Burr, a Republican out of North Carolina, plans to propose a new bill that would impose criminal penalties on companies that don’t comply with those types of orders. Citing people familiar with the matter, the report says that Burr’s plan isn’t finalized yet and that it’s unclear how many other lawmakers support the idea.