Apple, Google, Microsoft Want Gov Surveillance Curtailed
Eight U.S. tech companies have sent a joint letter to President Obama and Congress asking for changes in the way governments collect personal data through the web. Apple, Facebook, Google, LinkedIn, Microsoft, Twitter, Yahoo, and AOL all believe that the bulk collection methods used today have gone too far. Referencing details that were exposed by Edward Snowden earlier this year, the companies said, "This summer's revelations highlighted the urgent need to reform government surveillance practices worldwide. The balance in many countries has tipped too far in favor of the state and away from the rights of the individual–rights that are enshrined in our Constitution." The companies want governments to target individuals rather than everyone, and suggest that consumers and businesses alike will not use technology they don't trust. "Governments have put this trust at risk, and governments need to help restore it," said Brad Smith, general counsel for Microsoft. Microsoft recently said that it would increase the encryption it uses in an attempt to prevent government snooping. In the letter, the companies suggest five principles of reform, including the use of an independent way to oversee national security and more freedom to offer details about government record requests publicly.
Microsoft Releases Edge Browser for Android and iOS, Launcher for Android
Microsoft today made a beta version of its Edge browser available to Android and iOS devices. The beta, available to registered Windows Insiders, requires users to initiate the signup process through a Windows 10 PC.
Microsoft Brings Cortana Assistant to Skype for Android and iOS
Microsoft today ported its Cortana personal assistant to its Skype chatting application, providing people with access to information without forcing them to leave Skype. Microsoft says Cortana in Skype can suggest useful information based on chat contents, suggest smart replies, manage schedules and/or reminders, and more.
Google Testing 3rd-Party Email Access in iOS Gmail App
Google is allowing people to use their non-Gmail email service within the Gmail app for iOS. Apple's own iOS email app and Microsoft's Outlook email app both already support multiple email services, as does Gmail on Android handsets.
NSA Ceases Collecting Phone Data in Bulk
The National Security Agency is no longer sucking in all the data generated by Americans' phone calls. The NSA was required to shut down its surveillance program by the end of the day Nov.
I call BS...
Everyone of these companies has helped the government get access to our data 9 ways to sunday, employees for each of them directly assisted the government in multiple ways and yet they can still half-truthfully say "we never gave them Direct Access".
Well what about indirect access thru your API, like to all the other customers you sell my info to? How about access to internal dev tools that arent available through your API?
We only know these facts, and the corps are only "protesting", because Snowden told us they were listening.
How Noble of these companies to stand up for my rights, Im sure its not because...
Those companies make most of their money by collecting that data and if they have it the government has it (being plugged deep into the actual lines being used).
This is an obvious attempt to get yokels to go "hey these nice companies are gonna stop that nasty stuff they been talking about on the news" - and it'll probably work.
Now it'll be another 6-12 months until another whistleblower gets threatened with execution for bringing up the elephant in the server room again.
But hey I would rather have them have all my information then the government. At least I know they just want to give me ads. Who know what the gov't wants to do with...
Apple, Google, Microsoft all agree
Love the hypocrisy ...
Internet companies complaining about online surveillance of user behavior and data mining .... love the hypocrisy.
So……they’ll go silent, when they get paid for the transfer of data to governments.
Do internet corporations respect privacy? C’mon, really.