With Apple making very clear how strongly it feels about the privacy of customer data through the FBI case, it’s no surprise that the issue is a hot-button within the company. A Reuters piece shows just how serious Apple is when it comes to guarding personal data.

Any collection of Apple customer data requires sign-off from a committee of three “privacy czars” and a top executive, according to four former employees who worked on a variety of products that went through privacy vetting […] The trio of experts […] are both admired and feared.

One former employee said that debates over whether or not customer data can be used to improve a service usually take at least a month to settle, and some privacy issues are debated for more than a year before a final decision is reached. Key privacy issues are escalated all the way to Tim Cook.

It was a refusal to compromise on privacy that killed one of Apple’s products, says the piece, while others needed to be substantially reworked to achieve privacy sign-off …

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