China Labels iPhone A Security Threat

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By:   Posted on July 11 2014


State media says the iPhone's ability to collect user location data is dangerous.

China's state media on Friday criticized the Apple iPhone's location and time-stamping features, going so far as to say the device is a threat to national security. Apple began selling the iPhone through China Mobile, the country's largest mobile operator, early this year.

Chinese broadcaster CCTV ran a report showing how data stored in the "Frequent Locations" feature can be rooted out and put to nefarious uses. Ma Ding, who runs the online security institute at People’s Public Security University of China, claimed, "This is extremely sensitive data" that could be used to take a snapshot of China's economy and "even state secrets." Apple was highly criticized in China last year over its customer service and warranty policies. Apple CEO Tim Cook bowed to heavy pressure at the time and offered an official apology in April 2013. Apple didn't immediately respond to this week's broadcast by CCTV.

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