Tim Cook calls for strong U.S. privacy laws, says some tech firms are putting "profits over privacy"

Speaking today at the International Conference of Data Protection and Privacy Commissioners (ICDPPC) in Brussels, Apple CEO Tim Cook noted that businesses these days are creating a digital profile of each user that are swapped among each other. Saying that the trade in digital profiles among businesses has created a "data-industrial complex," Cook is asking the U.S. government to pass "a comprehensive federal privacy law."

Cook says that businesses collecting personal data belonging to users are in effect, conducting surveillance. The executive stated that "These stockpiles of personal data serve only to enrich the companies that collect them. This should make us very uncomfortable." While not naming the companies he had in mind, Apple's CEO might have been referring to Google and Facebook when he complained that some tech firms are putting "profits over privacy."

The executive had kind things to say about Europe's General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which was put into place on the continent to protect Europeans' privacy. This regulation can fine companies that use individual's personal information without permission, up to 4% of global revenue for the proceeding fiscal year.

During his speech, Tim Cook mentioned his proposal for a U.S. privacy law based on four personal rights. First, he says that U.S. consumers should have the right to have personal data minimized so that companies cannot connect data with the person it belongs to. Secondly, Cook says that U.S. consumers should have the right to know what data is being collected, and the reason why it is being collected. The CEO adds that U.S. consumers should also have the right to easily obtain a copy of their personal data, make corrections, and have it deleted. The fourth right is the right to security.

You can watch Tim Cook's speech by clicking on the video at the top of this article.

source: ArsTechnica



2. cmdacos

Posts: 4334; Member since: Nov 01, 2016

Some are using security as a marketing term but aren't really providing much of a different experience. Apple does well with security at the OS level and their own apps yet developers with iOS apps are not as secure with your data or privacy. Now Apple is leveraging the data app developers have to create shortcuts. Also if you are attached to a network you don't have privacy. Give me services all day every day.

3. Subie

Posts: 2430; Member since: Aug 01, 2015

So does he want this for the benefit of the average citizen, or to help drive down the competitions business model... As these companies are primarily being about making money first, I know which I believe to be the reason.

5. Finalflash

Posts: 4063; Member since: Jul 23, 2013

He's obviously doing this to keep everyone else down. Apple is falling behind rapidly in the AI game and they want to strangle the competition rather than innovate. I mean instead of putting more money in R&D, they'd rather buy politicians, give $150 billion to shareholders (like Tim himself) and buyback stock to enrich themselves.

27. piyath

Posts: 2445; Member since: Mar 23, 2012

Apple is not failing, Apple is winning winning and winning....!!!! They aren't tired of winning yet. They will destroy Samsung and Google and continue to win win and win more.

6. strategic_developer

Posts: 1627; Member since: Jul 17, 2018

Pot meet ketrle. And Apple puts profits above giving a solid product that is actually worth what it costs. 2 different ends of the spectrum, same result. How many times Apple have you blamed customers for stuff that was clearly your faukty. How many times you put customers in danger or released flawed products, because you didn't want to release product late that you knew internally had issues. Simply because profit was more important than making sure the product was being release was of better quality and workmanship. Tim Cook, please shut up calling out other companies when you are guilty if tax dodging, selling broken products and purpose altering then with updates and not telling us. Hypocrites!

7. errnope

Posts: 43; Member since: May 23, 2018

Let us remind ourselves of which fruit company was cause secretly recording all your GPS data and favourite locations. Ah yes. The thing is everyone is doing it. It is just some have open reputation for it and others don't.

24. Peaceboy

Posts: 640; Member since: Oct 11, 2018

Note 7 was so explosive to compete apple. Rushed!

8. midan

Posts: 3132; Member since: Oct 09, 2017

Well done Cook, it's time to talk about this subject. We won't even know anymore what these devices share about us, especially with Android which is designed to sell people's privacy. When people get more aware to this subject, more people will switch to iPhone.

11. Atechguy0

Posts: 918; Member since: Aug 03, 2018

Apple charged Google $9 billion to be the default search for this year, and it was 3 billion last year. Apple also gets access to the data from Google as well. So I guess it's legal for Apple to be a pimp then. Apple is inocent in all this data collection stuff. Right midan? Give us a break. If Apple cares about privacy then Apple wouldn't allow any collection of data, period. Yet it's okay for Apple to charge and make a profit on Apple's customers data.

15. sissy246

Posts: 7129; Member since: Mar 04, 2015

'Apple charged Google $9 billion to be the default search for this year" Yep, and do you all think google paid that to Apple if it wasn't going to make them a return with some kind of data info.

12. RebelwithoutaClue unregistered

If more people would be aware of Apple's anti-user policy on things like the right to repair yourself, more people would switch away from Apple. Don't pretend Apple cares more for their users than for instance Google. Privacy is just another marketing term that works well for Apple.

55. bassembm

Posts: 143; Member since: Dec 27, 2015

so you can stop using google search bar ,google maps , etc... on your iphone , and show us what would you get from search results on Bing or safari

9. Ghost04

Posts: 522; Member since: May 03, 2014

Now Apple is doing"Privacy" Marketing to promote their products as better for higher sells and profit. Ingenious move

10. Back_from_beyond

Posts: 1476; Member since: Sep 04, 2015

Meanwhile his own company sells user data to anyone who wants it, let's developers collect data without permission and doesn't do much about it and can't keep their iCloud platform secure for more than a month at a time and when it's compromised doesn't even take responsibility for it, or inform those who might've been affected. Tim, why are you pointing fingers when you yourself don't have your s**t sorted? Are you maybe lying about how well iPhones sell? Do you realize you're losing ground to other tech companies rapidly and can't offer any real competition? Every other year iOS is a crapfest, aside from a redesign of the iPhone barely anything has changed in years, Macbooks are sorely disappointing and overpriced and you're almost completely dependant on developers to keep your platform interesting. Hell the only reason the Apple Watch sells is that you shovel them to people through health insurance companies for barely a quarter of the retail price, in other words, cheaper than your average Wear OS watch.

13. eli577

Posts: 142; Member since: Jun 29, 2010

Am I the only one who remembers the Icloud hackings and the incident with NSA? And now they are so smart, sarcastic laugh.

14. andrewc31394

Posts: 305; Member since: Jun 23, 2012

this comment section causes cancer i swear

16. Awalker

Posts: 1986; Member since: Aug 15, 2013

We don't need the government involved here. No one is forced to give their data to any private company. People are choosing to do so.

19. admin_user

Posts: 33; Member since: Sep 26, 2017

Sure. In your dreams private companies are good, voted governments are bad and people (in your world: customers) can choose everything they want. It´s a fantasy world.

22. Awalker

Posts: 1986; Member since: Aug 15, 2013

You seem to have a reading comprehension problem. No where in my comment did I say private companies are good and government is bad.

17. monkeyb

Posts: 414; Member since: Jan 17, 2018

Tim Cook is a great CEO for his shareholders but a hypocrite ultimately. He says others put "Profits over privacy", I say Apple puts "Profits over consumer interests". Every company has its own business model and Tim Cook sounds lame when he talks about others making money.

18. jacky899

Posts: 431; Member since: May 16, 2017

Calling for government intervention means calling for NSA to install even more backdoors and vulnerabilities in our hardware and software.

20. admin_user

Posts: 33; Member since: Sep 26, 2017

What? Maybe you should get some education about the new privacy law in European Union. And you should get some information about the role of NSA for private US corporations. Economic espionage is the main task of NSA.

21. AfterShock

Posts: 4147; Member since: Nov 02, 2012

Tim using big gov to put up roadblocks for others. Sinister intentions guised as being for the greater good, totally Apple thing to do.

23. xfire99

Posts: 1207; Member since: Mar 14, 2012

Hypocrite! Every company needs users data to know what users wants. There are always 3rd parts you can hire or buy data from.

26. perry1234

Posts: 654; Member since: Aug 14, 2012

Not an iFanboy, by a long shot , but I agree with Tim Cook here. Also, I guess I hate FB more than any single manufacturer at this point. The whole company is a mess, blunder after blunders. Zuck needs to go.

30. mootu

Posts: 1541; Member since: Mar 16, 2017

That would be fine if Tim Crook was telling the truth. Apple collects and stores just as much data on customers as Google, Microsoft and Facebook. Do you think that data is safe?, Not when a 14 year old kid can spend 12 months inside Apples own secure servers downloading whatever he feels like. Next Mr Crook pimps out the flock to Google for billions of dollars a year allowing them to track every bit of data on Apple users and then claims IOS is the more secure platform. He says big data firms like Google are evil but is giving them data for cash. Honestly Tim Crook would throw you under a bus if he could make a dollar from it, the guy is an absolute hypocrite.

31. perry1234

Posts: 654; Member since: Aug 14, 2012

Mr. Crook....that made me LOL! I don’t know if data breach is equal to willingly allow companies like Google in on some data. This is mutual agreement. Hacking on the other hand is a whole other ball game , like what Cambrige Analytica did with the recent US elections. Yeah he(Tim) could, and is, making a dollar out of every damn thing. Even though he may be a crook, there does not seem to be anything illegal about it. But not with FB. Also, there are several reports that Safari storess way less user data than Chrome. What is a fact that, Safari provides improved battery life and performance over chrome (on iDevices obviously). So just weighing in the pros and cons..

29. xchatter

Posts: 44; Member since: Mar 25, 2013

Just Tim Cook using the government to suppress the competition as usual. It's sad what is Apple today(and the last 5 or so years). But it's even worse how people support them. Stuff like lightning port® and other inferior technology...... c'mon people....

* Some comments have been hidden, because they don't meet the discussions rules.

Latest Stories

This copy is for your personal, non-commercial use only. You can order presentation-ready copies for distribution to your colleagues, clients or customers at https://www.parsintl.com/phonearena or use the Reprints & Permissions tool that appears at the bottom of each web page. Visit https://www.parsintl.com/ for samples and additional information.
FCC OKs Cingular's purchase of AT&T Wireless