iCloud privacy/security issue

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Carrier
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iCloud privacy/security issue

Post by Carrier » Sat Jun 13, 2015 8:46 am

http://www.theguardian.com/technology/2 ... acy-icloud

It is no good advising users to turn off iCloud, keep it signed out, etc. The problem is that with all user-selectable options turned to “off” or ”do not report” your information continues to be sent elsewhere. Your computer is not under your control. The only way to avoid this is to use a version of OSX that does not incorporate this automatic spyware.

The same may apply to applications such as TextEdit whose drafts are being sent elsewhere. It may be necessary to revert to earlier versions which do not contain spyware or to use other applications. Other apps will not be necessary if the automatic online reporting problem is confined to OSX but this has not been confirmed.

Even using applications such as TextEdit, Numbers, Word and Pages when your computer is not connected to the Internet is insufficient as OSX and applications may be set up to store copies of your drafts and send them to Big Brother when you next connect to the Internet. Such hidden drafts would not show up in an anti-virus or malware scan as they are legitimate drafts - which have just been stored for someone else’s use when you next go online. The hidden drafts would then be “removed” from your computer but not from where they have been sent.

Other Apple apps seem to be operating in a similar fashion. Enable Location Services on my iMac with Yosemite 10.10.2 has a blank box but glancing at Security and Privacy indicates that Maps.app and System Services are apps that have requested my location within the last 24 hours. I looked at Maps when it came out and have not used it since. However Security & Privacy indicates Maps still seems to be operating and doing so outside of my control. I have not use Maps for many months let alone within the last 24 hours so it must be spyware operating on some other party’s behalf. Whose and what for? How do I stop it?

What other spyware has Apple introduced and what backdoors are there in OSX and its apps? One OSX backdoor was used was by Apple last December to install an update on many Macs without their users knowledge or permission. http://www.ehmac.ca/anything-mac/129105 ... r-mac.html What else has this backdoor been used for - in both directions - and by who else than Apple? Are there other backdoors?

The Guardian article advises that Apple has been doing this since well before Yosemite was released. The support document Apple published on the subject was dated 16 December 2013 but the Guardian advises the automatic-saving function might go back even further.

The Guardian article exposes that files are saved without the user’s permission or knowledge to “a remote server that Apple controls.” However it is quite likely that they are also being saved to another server(s) that someone else controls. Apple advises: “When a user later gives the file a name and selects a location to store it, the document is “removed” from iCloud (unless, of course, the user intentionally saves the file to iCloud).” Do you really believe that? Do you really believe that Apple introduced automatic-saving of your document drafts online only to have them “removed” when you name or save the document, all without your permission or knowledge, for no reason at all? What is to stop the file being scanned in the meantime, especially as Apple is a known NSA/GCHQ Prism agent or accomplice. There is no mention of removing it from other servers it might have been sent to.

What is the latest situation regarding the iCloud security problem that the Guardian exposed? Has it been eliminated? If not, what is the last version of OSX that does not incorporate anything to do with iCloud or other versions of online storage? What can Mac desktop and laptop users do about other uncontrollable apps such as Maps? Helpful answers will be appreciated!
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CpnCrunch
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Re: iCloud privacy/security issue

Post by CpnCrunch » Sat Jun 13, 2015 1:51 pm

It's pretty easy to turn off icloud altogether. I would recommend doing that, unless you need it.
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