Linked by Thom Holwerda on Fri 19th Apr 2013 14:09 UTC
Apple "All of those questions, messages, and stern commands that people have been whispering to Siri are stored on Apple servers for up to two years, Wired can now report. Yesterday, we raised concerns about some fuzzy disclosures in Siri's privacy policy. After our story ran, Apple spokeswoman Trudy Muller called to explain Apple's policy, something privacy advocates have asking for." Apple cares about your privacy.
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Finally?
by Tony Swash on Fri 19th Apr 2013 15:01 UTC
Tony Swash
Member since:
2009-08-22

You have been reading too much Gruber ;)

Reply Score: 2

RE: Finally?
by jared_wilkes on Fri 19th Apr 2013 15:08 UTC in reply to "Finally?"
jared_wilkes Member since:
2011-04-25

No, unfortunately people haven't been reading Gruber or they don't understand the joke so they continue to needlessly use the tired trope and look like jacktastic assholes doing so, or Gruber has been ineffective at shaming these idiots, or the pageviews are worth more than the shame they should feel. (Thom didn't write the headline. He just re-used the original headline from the article by Robert McMillan in Wired. I'd imagine Thom is very aware of how "finally" is used in Apple headlines.)

Edited 2013-04-19 15:25 UTC

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Finally?
by jared_wilkes on Fri 19th Apr 2013 15:16 UTC in reply to "RE: Finally?"
jared_wilkes Member since:
2011-04-25

By the way, Robert McMillan got an answer in less than 24 hours. "Finally," indeed, asshole.

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: Finally?
by Thom_Holwerda on Fri 19th Apr 2013 15:24 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Finally?"
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

I had no idea about the "finally". I'm pretty sure it refers to Siri being out for god knows how long and Apple never having disclosed this information. If you read the article, you'd know Wired wasn't the one who originally raised the concern - the American Civil Liberties Union was.

Don't jump to conclusions to feed your own preconceived notions of needing to protect poor, misunderstood, beleaguered Apple.

Reply Score: 10

RE[4]: Finally?
by jared_wilkes on Fri 19th Apr 2013 15:27 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Finally?"
jared_wilkes Member since:
2011-04-25

An ACLU member blogged about it a year ago. I do not know if they put the question to Apple. (Are we suggesting that Apple has to account for all questions indirectly posed to them via blog? And, by the way, Thom, I read both the Wired article, the ACLU blog, and several other stories aggregating this today ahead of reading your link. I am being extremely kind in even suggesting that Ozer "indirectly asked" Apple in his blog post.) I do know a reporter did ask them yesterday, and he received an answer from Apple in less than 24 hours.

Edited 2013-04-19 15:37 UTC

Reply Score: 3

v RE[4]: Finally?
by Tony Swash on Fri 19th Apr 2013 18:26 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Finally?"
RE[5]: Finally?
by No it isnt on Fri 19th Apr 2013 20:40 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Finally?"
No it isnt Member since:
2005-11-14

So follow your own advice and stfu.

Reply Score: 2

RE[6]: Finally?
by Tony Swash on Fri 19th Apr 2013 22:15 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Finally?"
Tony Swash Member since:
2009-08-22

So follow your own advice and stfu.


Another angry guy with no sense of humour. Chill bro.

Reply Score: 0

RE[7]: Finally?
by No it isnt on Sat 20th Apr 2013 11:57 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: Finally?"
No it isnt Member since:
2005-11-14

So pointing out the irony of your comment implies that I'm angry and have no sense of humour.

Reply Score: 4

RE[7]: Finally?
by kwan_e on Sat 20th Apr 2013 12:08 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: Finally?"
kwan_e Member since:
2007-02-18

I think Swash has been lying about his use of Apple products. You're supposed to become insanely creative immediately upon using an Apple product. But his demonstrated inability to create a funny joke (while delusionally believing it was in any way humorous) in this occasion proves otherwise.

Reply Score: 7

RE[5]: Finally?
by BallmerKnowsBest on Mon 22nd Apr 2013 12:27 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Finally?"
BallmerKnowsBest Member since:
2008-06-02

When you are in a hole stop digging.

When someone makes a well deserved but gentle joke, possibly at your expense, join in the laughter.


Riiiiight, because it's not as if you have along history of trying to dismiss all criticism of Apple by resorting to lazy rhetoric, weaselly passive-aggression, and talking points copy-pasted from Gruber.

(See also: Poe's Law & The Boy who Cried Wolf)

Pompous bluster is the worst possible response.


That's pretty funny, coming from a person who has repeatedly used the phrase "Apple-phobe/Apple-phobia" in a pathetically transparent attempt to equate criticism of Apple with homophoia (see also: the fallacy of guilt by association).

Reply Score: 4

RE[4]: Finally?
by bassbeast on Sun 21st Apr 2013 22:10 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Finally?"
bassbeast Member since:
2007-11-11

Ya know, somebody really ought to do a study on the whole "treating corps like ballclubs" phenomena because I have noticed it has gone waaay up as have labeling anybody who isn't part of the ballclub attitude as shills or haters and I really don't get it.

I mean I could understand it if they owned a shitload of stock or something but they don't, I might even be able to put it down to buyer's remorse, like those poor saps that got burnt by the Apple laptops with Nvidia GPUs but people will be just as insane-o when it comes to free software or companies like Google where they don't have a cent invested...so why? Why do they do that?

I like AMD CPUs (still think the bang for the buck can't be beat, not when I'm picking up Athlon triples that have 80% unlock rates for $45) and Asusrock boards and laptops, Like Win 7 but hate Win 8, like Samsung HDDs but hate Seagate, but if you feel differently about any of those...okay? It would be as silly for me to get upset because you feel differently as it would to get mad because you prefer tacos over fried chicken.

I don't know, maybe I'm just too damned old and aren't hip enough to get it or something but I have never understood why any article with the big three, Apple, Google, or MSFT, seem to have the fanboys come out in force to either "defend the company" or to tear it down because they are rooting for the other guy. all I can think of when i see this crap is that old Mel Brooks bit "All go to hell except cave 76!" because it seems just as pointless and stupid to me.

Reply Score: 3

RE[5]: Finally?
by Tony Swash on Mon 22nd Apr 2013 05:56 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Finally?"
Tony Swash Member since:
2009-08-22

Ya know, somebody really ought to do a study on the whole "treating corps like ballclubs" phenomena because I have noticed it has gone waaay up as have labeling anybody who isn't part of the ballclub attitude as shills or haters and I really don't get it.

I mean I could understand it if they owned a shitload of stock or something but they don't, I might even be able to put it down to buyer's remorse, like those poor saps that got burnt by the Apple laptops with Nvidia GPUs but people will be just as insane-o when it comes to free software or companies like Google where they don't have a cent invested...so why? Why do they do that?

I like AMD CPUs (still think the bang for the buck can't be beat, not when I'm picking up Athlon triples that have 80% unlock rates for $45) and Asusrock boards and laptops, Like Win 7 but hate Win 8, like Samsung HDDs but hate Seagate, but if you feel differently about any of those...okay? It would be as silly for me to get upset because you feel differently as it would to get mad because you prefer tacos over fried chicken.

I don't know, maybe I'm just too damned old and aren't hip enough to get it or something but I have never understood why any article with the big three, Apple, Google, or MSFT, seem to have the fanboys come out in force to either "defend the company" or to tear it down because they are rooting for the other guy. all I can think of when i see this crap is that old Mel Brooks bit "All go to hell except cave 76!" because it seems just as pointless and stupid to me.


Frankly it's the rabid anti-fans that seem more inexplicable.

If someone likes a company and it's products I think defending it in public is an OK thing to do, especially when confronted with such shabby journalistic practices as the use of the word 'finally' in the article under discussion, which you will note I attacked with some fairly gently sarcasm.

Compare my comment to, for example, that of Curio's where in response he actually shouts out in capital letters that Apple are " controlling FASCIST, NAZI, JACKBOOTED, thugs", presumably because of the way they administer the App store or perhaps because they won't let Flash run on their devices. Don't you think that such a comment is more weird, more disturbing and more worthy of counter-comment than my relatively restrained 'fandom'?

If Curios bizzare anti-Apple rage was a one off then it would be just the ravings of nut job but such hyperbolic comments about mostly, but not exclusively, Apple are all too common and are often left un-critiqured. I think criticising a company or a product or a practice in the tech world is just fine as long as it is done in a reasonably rational way, perhaps in a way that teases out the issues in an interesting fashion or offers up a different analysis or data for consideration. But when people start frothing at the mouth about something being 'evil' or worse than the Nazis of whatever then I think they should be called out about their poisonous and idiotic rhetoric.

Edited 2013-04-22 06:01 UTC

Reply Score: 1

RE[6]: Finally?
by bassbeast on Tue 23rd Apr 2013 23:30 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Finally?"
bassbeast Member since:
2007-11-11

All you are doing is defending the practice which again...totally batshit.

Now if somebody is posting obvious lies, like "Windows BSODs daily" or "All Apple products are made in sweatshops" now it is perfectly fine and dandy to post "That is incorrect, here are the facts" dot dot dot and preferably cite examples with citations so you aren't just pulling them out your behind.

But I'm sorry but reading some of your posts would make one think you drive a car with an Apple sticker on it and have multiple non computer items with the Apple logo (and God have mercy if that is true) and if you don't have stock or a vested interest in the company? that is just batshit.

Its like how you will see macheads jump through logic hoops rather than accept "Macs are expensive" which duh! Even Steve said they were, his whole strategy was to make Apple a top tier brand like Prada or Porsche and you don't do that by providing "good value" or any of that bull, you do it by being more expensive than the other guy!

So while I agree completely that the "anti" posts are just as batshit, which I pointed out in my original post BTW, that don't make the pro posts any less batshit, just a different kind of batshit. To defend batshit behavior by pointing out the other guy is more batshit is as pathetic as those that defend gitmo by saying "Look at what china does"...and? Who gives a crap what THEY are doing, what we are talking about is what YOU are doing and just because somebody somewhere on the planet is worse does NOT give you a free pass..get it now?

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Finally?
by BallmerKnowsBest on Mon 22nd Apr 2013 12:27 UTC in reply to "RE: Finally?"
BallmerKnowsBest Member since:
2008-06-02

No, unfortunately people haven't been reading Gruber or they don't understand the joke so they continue to needlessly use the tired trope and look like jacktastic assholes doing so, or Gruber has been ineffective at shaming these idiots, or the pageviews are worth more than the shame they should feel. (Thom didn't write the headline. He just re-used the original headline from the article by Robert McMillan in Wired.


....u mad bro?

Or is all of that bluster just an attempt at misdirection, to distract us from the fact that your adorable little "finally" meme doesn't actually apply in this context?

I'd imagine Thom is very aware of how "finally" is used in Apple headlines.)


Hate to break it to you, but no one cares about Gruber outside of the Apple echo chamber. Not knowing specific details about Gruber should be considered a point of pride, like not knowing the titles of individual Twilight movies or the names of Justin Beiber songs.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Finally?
by curio on Fri 19th Apr 2013 19:02 UTC in reply to "Finally?"
curio Member since:
2010-05-03

Swash-Rinse-Repeat!

Oh joy, how novel. The captain of the Apple business practice's sanitation squad has some input on this (every)matter.

And who cares that you've (and other mindless fanbois) signed-on to some wanker's notion of the proper use of the word FINALLY within the context of Apple and all their dubious dealings?

FINALLY, first pull thyne head from thyne own ass before presuming you've the sack to instruct others on how to do so.

Swash-Rinse-Repeat! ad nauseum...

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Finally?
by MOS6510 on Fri 19th Apr 2013 19:20 UTC in reply to "RE: Finally?"
MOS6510 Member since:
2011-05-12

You´re rather rude.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Finally?
by curio on Sat 20th Apr 2013 20:00 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Finally?"
curio Member since:
2010-05-03

Your "You´re rather rude" response would carry a lot more weight--not showing your true colors, if you had tagged all the rude comments in the thread as such. Most notably the first from user jared wilkes (below).

"they continue to needlessly use the tired trope and look like jacktastic assholes doing so, or Gruber has been ineffective at shaming these idiots."

Then we could all assume you're seeking a degree from The Emily Post Institute, and boning up on your skills at correcting (all) rude people. But no, you've self identified yourself as a Gruber parrot wanna-be and consummate "Bag Lapper" for the Apple cause by singling out my, rather mild rudeness, by comparison.

Reply Score: 1

RE[4]: Finally?
by MOS6510 on Sat 20th Apr 2013 20:22 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Finally?"
MOS6510 Member since:
2011-05-12

Your mild rudeness seems to be gravitating towards above average rudeness.

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: Finally?
by Bennie on Sun 21st Apr 2013 04:19 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Finally?"
Bennie Member since:
2012-06-14

Typical. You do not address what he wrote before his own qualification of his own rudeness. That your comment would be valid criticism if you also said the same thing about others being rude. But if the person who is being rude used it to defend Apple then suddenly it is not so bad to being rude. You just showing how hypocritical you are.

Reply Score: 2

RE[6]: Finally?
by MOS6510 on Sun 21st Apr 2013 06:54 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Finally?"
MOS6510 Member since:
2011-05-12

I did not address curio as he was being rude to me as well, making any conversation pointless.

My original rudeness spotting had to do with a reply to Tony. It was this reply I was objecting to as it seemed like yet another mindless Tony Swash bashing. I don´t see why if I object to a Swash Bash I should suddenly become the moral police of this site.

Jared only directed one insult against another site member, but this was Thom who doesn´t mind insulting his own readers so he might even like it and if he doesn´t he shouldn´t do it either. I don´t see Tony Swash handing out insults and you´re not likely to see me do so either.

Reply Score: 1

RE[7]: Finally?
by BallmerKnowsBest on Wed 24th Apr 2013 17:45 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: Finally?"
BallmerKnowsBest Member since:
2008-06-02

I don´t see Tony Swash handing out insults and you´re not likely to see me do so either.


Directly? Of course not, he clearly doesn't have the spine for insulting anyone directly. But he's the master of indirect insults via thinly-veiled, weaselly passive-aggression. And when I say "thinly-veiled", I mean that he basically just uses the term "people who" instead of "you" - even though it's always painfully obvious who the insult is directed at.

Here's an example of an insult that has been "Swashed":

"I find it curious that the only people who defend Tony tend to also be prolific Apple defenders."

And here's how that same insult would be phrased by someone who possessed a pair of balls:

"The only reason you're defending Tony is out of a feeling solidarity for your fellow fanboy."

Or for a few hundred specific examples:

https://www.google.com/search?q=%22tony+swash%22+%22peop...

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Finally?
by Tony Swash on Fri 19th Apr 2013 19:22 UTC in reply to "RE: Finally?"
Tony Swash Member since:
2009-08-22

Swash-Rinse-Repeat!

Oh joy, how novel. The captain of the Apple business practice's sanitation squad has some input on this (every)matter.

And who cares that you've (and other mindless fanbois) signed-on to some wanker's notion of the proper use of the word FINALLY within the context of Apple and all their dubious dealings?

FINALLY, first pull thyne head from thyne own ass before presuming you've the sack to instruct others on how to do so.

Swash-Rinse-Repeat! ad nauseum...


I guess the humour bypass is more common than I thought. The reference in my original comment was to the long standing series of posts on the Daring Fireball site mocking the use of the word 'finally' in reports about Apple. The reason that usage is worthy of being mocked is that it is usually an example of lazy journalism, by inserting the word 'finally' in a headline it implies that Apple have been dragging their feet about something or resisting something, even though there is often no evidence of that, and thus a spurious but click worthy headline is created.

Hence my mocking comment about the use of the word 'finally' in relation to information about Siri data retention which, it appears, Apple were first directly asked about a day or so ago and to which they responded with the requested information within 24 hours. Using the word 'finally' in relation to that seems mock worthy.

You will note that explaining a joke kills the humour ;)

No doubt Thom or someone else will now ferret away to find some forensic evidence that 'proves' that Apple have indeed resisted in some way the revelation of the details of Siri data retention and thus proffer a defence of the word 'finally'.

Rearrange the words 'teacup, 'in', 'a' and 'storm' to suit.

Edited 2013-04-19 19:23 UTC

Reply Score: 0

RE[3]: Finally?
by curio on Sat 20th Apr 2013 19:45 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Finally?"
curio Member since:
2010-05-03

You've rightly identified the "wanker" as John Gruber, of Daring Fireball, (thank you very much), but the question was "who cares(beside other mindless fanbois)?".

A joke? Hardly. It's a new-ish control mechanism that's surfaced in recent years on blogs and in their forums.
The pundit/writer enables his duller parroting fans (those with the lowest brain to shite ratios, who can't think for themselves) a means by which to disqualify a negative argument simply by their opposition's use of this or that word or term.
Using FINALLY in the context of Apple (here)is supposed to negate the whole argument that follows by subterfuge, while at the same time the pundit/writer/wanker (Gruber) is promoted by being quoted as some preeminent authority, couched in this instance as humor.

As to your last point on forensic evidence of Apple's resistance where the word finally is unimpeachably appropriate.

When, FINALLY, is Apple going to pass full ownership rights on to the purchasers of their bought and paid for products? Instead of acting the controlling FASCIST, NAZI, JACKBOOTED, thugs that their actions over the years have proven they most certainly are.

Note: FASCIST, NAZI and JACKBOOT are all used in various venues within this same mechanism.

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: Finally?
by Tony Swash on Sun 21st Apr 2013 10:19 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Finally?"
Tony Swash Member since:
2009-08-22

When, FINALLY, is Apple going to pass full ownership rights on to the purchasers of their bought and paid for products? Instead of acting the controlling FASCIST, NAZI, JACKBOOTED, thugs that their actions over the years have proven they most certainly are.

Note: FASCIST, NAZI and JACKBOOT are all used in various venues within this same mechanism.


That's a really, really bonkers thing to say.

What cannot you do with your Apple device that you want to do but are prevented from doing by Apple?

Why does preventing you from doing these things amount to behaviour so heinous that it compares to one of the most brutal and murderous movements in history?

It makes no sense to me.

As to the mocking of the use of the word 'finally', it is an attack on cheap and lazy journalism. It's use in headlines is often an attempt to inject some drama and controversy in to what would be otherwise a fairly bland non-story. It's low quality journalism designed to attract attention and clicks. It should be attacked and mocked.

The use of 'finally' is becoming as prevalent, and is as bad, as the gratuitous use of question marks in headlines, another awful journalistic practice.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Betteridge's_law_of_headlines

The problem with Apple phobics like yourself (and the use of the word phobic is appropriate I think for someone who actually thinks a software management system is somehow equivalent to the perpetrators of the Holocaust) is that you don't care about journalistic standards as long as the bad journalism is attacking Apple. Shame on you.

Reply Score: 2

About data deletion
by dvhh on Fri 19th Apr 2013 16:58 UTC
dvhh
Member since:
2006-03-20

If the data has been dissociated from the user, how would Apple know which data to delete when the user "turn off" Siri ?

Reply Score: 2

RE: About data deletion
by jared_wilkes on Fri 19th Apr 2013 17:07 UTC in reply to "About data deletion"
jared_wilkes Member since:
2011-04-25

The disassociation occurs when it is turned off, not the deletion. That disassociated data is then retained for up to, but potentially less than, 18 months before it is deleted, no need to know who it was. I don't see the confusion.

Reply Score: 3

Apple vs; Google
by franksands on Fri 19th Apr 2013 17:58 UTC
franksands
Member since:
2009-08-18

Why were there so many protesters of google saving search data for 6 months but none about Apple holding your data for 2 years?

Reply Score: 2

RE: Apple vs; Google
by jared_wilkes on Fri 19th Apr 2013 18:36 UTC in reply to "Apple vs; Google"
jared_wilkes Member since:
2011-04-25

Since Google retains data for 18 months in most nations and only has variability based on local laws mandating retention ranging from 6-24 months and had retained data indefinitely up to about 2007 when many nations began cracking down on them (exact date not double-checked and confirmed), I have no idea what "protests" over 6 month retention you are talking about.

But if you can elaborate with accuracy, I'm sure there are differences to explore.

Edited 2013-04-19 18:51 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE: Apple vs; Google
by Tony Swash on Sat 20th Apr 2013 18:06 UTC in reply to "Apple vs; Google"
Tony Swash Member since:
2009-08-22

Why were there so many protesters of google saving search data for 6 months but none about Apple holding your data for 2 years?


Perhaps it's because the two companies have different business models and therefore are driven by fundamentally different dynamics. In the case of Google their business model is to collect data on what people do on the internet and then use that data to sell targeted advertising. The people using Google services are not Google's customers, the people buying the advertising are Google customers, and Google wants to keep as much data about specific individuals (your search history, key words from your email, what you watched on Youtube,) so that it can personalise and thus increase the value of the targeted ads it serves to you. None of that is wrong, but it does have implications about how deeply the urge to collect and retain data about specific individuals is embedded in Google.

Apple's business model is to combine software, services and hardware to make a few well designed things that people want to buy and sell them at a profit. Siri is a service and collecting data about the voice interactions that people have with it allows Apple to improve Siri, and thus enhance the value of it's products, but it is not necessary for Apple to associate that data with individuals, associating the data with specific individuals would not add value to Apple's products and thus is not very important to the company. Whenever you speak into Siri, it ships it off to Apple’s data farm for analysis. Apple generates a random numbers to represent the user and it associates the voice files with that number. This number — not your Apple user ID or email address — represents you as far as Siri’s back-end voice analysis system is concerned.

Once the voice recording is six months old, Apple “disassociates” your user number from the clip, deleting the number from the voice file. But it keeps these disassociated files for up to 18 more months for testing and product improvement purposes.

Reply Score: 1

Hard to know the truth
by Alfman on Fri 19th Apr 2013 18:14 UTC
Alfman
Member since:
2011-01-28

"Once the voice recording is six months old, Apple 'disassociates' your user number from the clip, deleting the number from the voice file."


Company PR staff may innocently think there's no problem even though there could be. One might assume that deleting the foreign keys is enough, but consider how AOL was overconfident and once failed to properly "anonymize" data that got released. Now I doubt apple would ever allow user data to exit it's walls, but it's still conceivable that an accurate correlation method still exists.

http://searchengineland.com/google-anonymizing-search-records-to-pr...

If there are timestamps in both the user logs and voice records, one might be able to correlate those. Even without any IDs at all, if the records are sequentially ordered the same way in two systems, they might be identifiable. Re-correlating records could be an interesting CS challenge.

Reply Score: 3

RE: Hard to know the truth
by MOS6510 on Fri 19th Apr 2013 18:36 UTC in reply to "Hard to know the truth"
MOS6510 Member since:
2011-05-12

It´s too much effort while the "rewards" are very little.

If you´re going to hack Apple why not go for the credit card info from the iTunes store? Or iCloud´s email or iWork files?

Trying to get to Siri´s voice archive is like breaking in to a bank, ignoring the money and stealing the Phone memo stack of the receptionist.

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Hard to know the truth
by Alfman on Fri 19th Apr 2013 20:50 UTC in reply to "RE: Hard to know the truth"
Alfman Member since:
2011-01-28

MOS6510,

"It´s too much effort while the 'rewards' are very little. If you´re going to hack Apple why not go for the credit card info from the iTunes store? Or iCloud´s email or iWork files?"

I was only talking potential feasibility, irrespective of why. If you need a motive, use your imagination; credit card transactions from a legal store are probably much less incriminating than voice data.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Hard to know the truth
by MOS6510 on Sat 20th Apr 2013 06:02 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Hard to know the truth"
MOS6510 Member since:
2011-05-12

But what are the chances your target has an iPhone 4S/5, uses Siri, spoke incriminating words via it and you knowing this?

Then you'd have to hack in to Apple and find that piece of voice data amongst billions of snippets.

I don't say it's impossible, but it's very unlikey and it doesn't make much sense when looking at effort vs reward.

Emails, surf stats, files, computer contents, dial lists, etc... are much more likely to contain incriminating information and are much easier to obtain. People who worry about Siri privacy should be worrying about those things a lot more.

Reply Score: 3

RE[4]: Hard to know the truth
by Alfman on Sat 20th Apr 2013 07:37 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Hard to know the truth"
Alfman Member since:
2011-01-28

MOS6510,

Your really missing my point, which was just because a corporation says something is annonymized doesn't necessarily mean it is. That's all there was to it.


Edit: Your post gives me the impression that you are only considering privacy from hackers. But one's privacy can also be breached by insiders and court orders. If you've got a tin foil hat on: conceivably some countries would love to conduct blanket searches if they could get their hands on the data (illicitly or otherwise) to conduct witch-hunts. I am not familiar with Siri's T&Cs, but it certainly would not have been obvious to me that the service was archiving user voice records on apple's servers. It's not really any worse than other kinds of records like you said, but we should recognize that there is a risk that's greater than zero.

Edited 2013-04-20 07:48 UTC

Reply Score: 6

RE[5]: Hard to know the truth
by MOS6510 on Sat 20th Apr 2013 17:45 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Hard to know the truth"
MOS6510 Member since:
2011-05-12

I agree, but my argument is that if you worry about this (Siri commands being stored anonymous in order to improve the service) there is a very long list of stuff that should worry you much more.

If you're a privacy extremist you wouldn't use Siri, smart phones or in fact any connected device anyway.

Reply Score: 2

caring
by Soulbender on Sat 20th Apr 2013 03:32 UTC
Soulbender
Member since:
2005-08-18

It's not caring if you only do it because you've been pressured.

Reply Score: 3

RE: caring
by MOS6510 on Sat 20th Apr 2013 06:04 UTC in reply to "caring"
MOS6510 Member since:
2011-05-12

What does pressured mean?

Seems like Apple does the right thing regarding privacy. Someone asked about it and got a quick answer.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: caring
by Soulbender on Sat 20th Apr 2013 06:40 UTC in reply to "RE: caring"
Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

I'm not saying it's not the right thing, I'm saying it doesn't mean they "care about your security".
I doubt any megacorp "care your your security" really.

Reply Score: 4

RE[2]: caring
by StephenBeDoper on Sat 20th Apr 2013 17:32 UTC in reply to "RE: caring"
StephenBeDoper Member since:
2005-07-06

Seems like Apple does the right thing regarding privacy.


Apple always does the right thing... after they've tried everything else (to paraphrase Churchill).

Reply Score: 5

RE[3]: caring
by MOS6510 on Sat 20th Apr 2013 17:46 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: caring"
MOS6510 Member since:
2011-05-12

If you care to give a few examples I may be able to agree.

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: caring
by StephenBeDoper on Sat 20th Apr 2013 18:19 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: caring"
StephenBeDoper Member since:
2005-07-06

If you care to give a few examples I may be able to agree.


Well, I was being glib (and how often do I get such a perfect opportunity to use my favourite Churchill quote?).

But off the top of my head, Apple does have a general history of starting from fairly hard-line "our way or the highway" positions, and then slowly opening up over time. E.g. the progression from the original "hermetically sealed" Macs to the very-easy-to-service PowerMacs of the mid-90s. Or the progression from the original iPhone's "pre-loaded and web-apps only" to allowing third-party development. Or relaxing some of the app store approval terms, particularly the ones related to cross-platform dev tools.

In this particular situation, not disclosing the retention policy for Siri data in Apple's privacy policies could arguably be a violation of privacy laws. At least in Canada, the privacy laws state that organizations who collect personally-identifiable information must provide a privacy policy that clearly spells out what information is collected, what the information will be used for, and how long it will be retained.

I say "arguably" because it's debatable whether or not the Siri data qualifies as personally-identifiable information.

Reply Score: 3

RE[5]: caring
by MOS6510 on Sat 20th Apr 2013 18:59 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: caring"
MOS6510 Member since:
2011-05-12

Apple adjusts itself and its policies I guess like every other company.

Not being able to (easily) service a Mac was something Steve Jobs wanted. When the PowerMacs of the 90´s were made he wasn't around.

One thing I do find strange is that Siri data is anonymized, i.e. not tied to a person, but if that person turns Siri off the data is deleted. So person and data were still linked.

Reply Score: 4

RE[6]: caring
by flypig on Sun 21st Apr 2013 02:22 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: caring"
flypig Member since:
2005-07-13

One thing I do find strange is that Siri data is anonymized, i.e. not tied to a person, but if that person turns Siri off the data is deleted. So person and data were still linked.


I think you're right. From the text of the article it doesn't make sense to assume the data is anonymised within the first six months (and Apple isn't claiming this either). Here's the statement:

"Apple generates a random numbers to represent the user and it associates the voice files with that number."

This makes no claim to anonymity. My reading of this would be that all of the voice files from your phone get associated with the same number. It may be that Siri doesn't care who the user is, but it follows straightforwardly that the phone and the data files are linkable if Apple cared to do so.

The use of a "random number" in this context is just a diversion. The number is still tied to your phone; it just doesn't happen to be your Apple ID.

If you turn Siri off, only the data that hasn't been anonymised is deleted. At least, this would be my reading of this:

"If a user turns Siri off, both identifiers are deleted immediately along with any associated data" (my emphasis). In other words, data that's no longer associated with the random number is retained (for up to two years).

Reply Score: 4

RE[7]: caring
by MOS6510 on Sun 21st Apr 2013 07:09 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: caring"
MOS6510 Member since:
2011-05-12

Then I think the data is assigned a random ID, thus anyone stealing the data wouldn´t know who is who. However Apple does keep a database that links users to these random numbers. So Apple (and anyone who can access this database) can link random IDs back to real people.

Anyway, I don´t think these voice clips would yield much interesting data for hackers and evil governments. Certainly not compared to many other sources of information.

If you send info via Siri using email or iMessage these messages can be found outside Siri´s voice vault anyway. Web searches done via Siri are also logged by the search provider and the ISP.

Why would you, if you´re a privacy extremist, use voice to operate a device when that means other people could hear you?

Reply Score: 2

RE[6]: caring
by StephenBeDoper on Tue 23rd Apr 2013 23:40 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: caring"
StephenBeDoper Member since:
2005-07-06

Apple adjusts itself and its policies I guess like every other company.


What I think it comes down to is: the more emphatically committed your are to a position, the odder it looks when you reverse that position. And Apple appears to have a much greater emotional attachment to their positions than most corporations, they're not mere business policies to Apple, they're often treated (or at least perceived) almost as matters of objective right and wrong.

E.g. if Apple were to back down from their stance on jailbreaking, it would be almost impossible to do so without being perceived as weak and/or hypocritical. Just the same as if Microsoft were to start releasing (E.g.) Exchange & Sharepoint server software for Linux.

Not being able to (easily) service a Mac was something Steve Jobs wanted. When the PowerMacs of the 90´s were made he wasn't around.


He may have been the root of it, but that attitude clearly went further than just Jobs. Apple didn't immediately start making easily-serviced models after Jobs left (the first time), and they didn't immediately stop making them after he came back.

One thing I do find strange is that Siri data is anonymized, i.e. not tied to a person, but if that person turns Siri off the data is deleted. So person and data were still linked.


Indeed, that part does seem a bit vague. As others have suggested, it could be mean that Apple only deletes the data that hasn't been "anonymized" yet.

Reply Score: 2

RE: caring
by jared_wilkes on Sat 20th Apr 2013 12:45 UTC in reply to "caring"
jared_wilkes Member since:
2011-04-25

What pressure? A journalist asked them, they explained the existing policy within 24 hours. That policy largely reflects industry practice and local laws that were established because Google wanted to keep your data in perpetuity as recent as 5 years ago... Oh, were you saying that Google doesn't care?

Edited 2013-04-20 12:46 UTC

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: caring
by Laurence on Sat 20th Apr 2013 13:54 UTC in reply to "RE: caring"
Laurence Member since:
2007-03-26

What pressure? A journalist asked them, they explained the existing policy within 24 hours. That policy largely reflects industry practice and local laws that were established because Google wanted to keep your data in perpetuity as recent as 5 years ago... Oh, were you saying that Google doesn't care?


That's exactly what he was saying:
I doubt any megacorp "care your your security" really.


Frankly I agree with him. Profiling users is valuable data. It's valuable to super markets (hence why we have loyalty cards that track purchases), websites (tracking cookies and what not) and search habits.

You don't run a company of Google nor Apple's size without putting money ahead of a few other preferences. Privacy being one of those inconveniences.

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: caring
by jared_wilkes on Sat 20th Apr 2013 14:59 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: caring"
jared_wilkes Member since:
2011-04-25

There is ZERO EVIDENCE that Apple was PRESSURED and changed/altered/modified/adjusted their policies AS A RESULT OF PRESSURE.

Reply Score: 0

RE[4]: caring
by Alfman on Sat 20th Apr 2013 17:08 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: caring"
Alfman Member since:
2011-01-28

jared_wilkes,

"There is ZERO EVIDENCE that Apple was PRESSURED and changed/altered/modified/adjusted their policies AS A RESULT OF PRESSURE."

Maybe, but isn't the only reason any corporations have privacy policies in the first place a result of public pressure? That wasn't always the case.

Do you pay your taxes? I might say "there is ZERO EVIDENCE that you were PRESSURED and changed/altered/modified/adjusted your behaviour AS A RESULT OF PRESSURE". But the pressure is most certainly there even if there's zero evidence that it affected your behaviour.

Good corporations will bow to public pressure BEFORE the point where there is evidence that they were pressured.

Edited 2013-04-20 17:09 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: caring
by jared_wilkes on Sun 21st Apr 2013 14:08 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: caring"
jared_wilkes Member since:
2011-04-25

No, I think it's nonsense to redefine "pressured" to "complying with the laws of the land."

And, again, some ACLU member wrote an obscure, not widely read blog post a year ago that never even puts the question to Apple and then another journalist asked Apple a year later and got an answer within 24 hours -- if that's "pressuring Apple" and "Apple responding to the pressure", you haven't been following Apple, the pressures put on it, media coverage, and how Apple responds to public pressure... because this is nothing in comparison to typical Greenpeace idiocy as just ne example.

Edited 2013-04-21 14:12 UTC

Reply Score: 1

RE[6]: caring
by Alfman on Sun 21st Apr 2013 19:03 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: caring"
Alfman Member since:
2011-01-28

jared_wilkes,

"No, I think it's nonsense to redefine 'pressured' to 'complying with the laws of the land.'"

The point was that companies, like individuals, change their courses of action when there's public pressure. Without pressure (and "laws of the land" for that matter too), they would be much more devious than they are. I think this is a pretty fair statement, which you probably would not have any problem with it if we were talking about microsoft, google, oracle, or anybody other than apple.

Reply Score: 2

RE[7]: caring
by jared_wilkes on Sun 21st Apr 2013 19:11 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: caring"
jared_wilkes Member since:
2011-04-25

Do you feel it's fair to say that you are pressured to not commit murder because it's illegal?

Do you feel it's fair to say that Apple planned to keep this data until the end of time until this one article so they changed their policy overnight?

If your answer is no to both, then what you are saying is nonsense.

Reply Score: 1

RE[4]: caring
by Laurence on Sun 21st Apr 2013 01:07 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: caring"
Laurence Member since:
2007-03-26

Did you actually read what I posted? Or were you so busy defending your sacred company that any comments that threaten your holy believe gets dismissed without a consideration?

Your reply comes across the latter because it's the typical fanboy response that doesn't actually take into account the wider point I was making.

Reply Score: 4

RE[5]: caring
by jared_wilkes on Sun 21st Apr 2013 14:06 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: caring"
jared_wilkes Member since:
2011-04-25

When a wider point isn't applicable, you aren't doing a good job making it.

Reply Score: 1

RE[6]: caring
by Laurence on Mon 22nd Apr 2013 08:09 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: caring"
Laurence Member since:
2007-03-26

Why isn't it applicable? You honestly trying to tell me that Apple put customers before money?

If you honestly believe that then you're even more deluded than the average fanboy.

Reply Score: 3

one possible use
by TechGeek on Sat 20th Apr 2013 17:26 UTC
TechGeek
Member since:
2006-01-14

One possible use is that since Apple keeps recordings of your voice, the government can use Apple's database to identify unknown voices using voice comparison software.

EDIT: Isn't this what the new CISPA is directly for?

Edited 2013-04-20 17:27 UTC

Reply Score: 2