U.S. Senator Asks FTC to Investigate Apple and Google Over Photo Uploads to Appmakers [Updated]

Senator Charles Schumer (D-NY) has asked the Federal Trade Commission to investigate reports that Apple and Google give app developers access to videos and photos on users smartphones.

chuckschumer
From Senator Schumer's press release:

“When someone takes a private photo, on a private cell phone, it should remain just that: private,” said Schumer. “Smartphone developers have an obligation to protect the private content of their users and not allow them to be veritable treasure troves of private, personal information that can then be uploaded and distributed without the consumer’s consent.”

According to reports by independent technologists, two separate loopholes, one in the Apple operating system and one in the Android operating system, allow apps to gather users’ photos. In the case of Apple, if a user allows the application to use location data, which is used for GPS-based applications, they also allow access to the user’s photo and video files that can be uploaded to outside servers. In the case of Android-based applications, the user only needs to allow the application to use Internet services as part of the app for third parties to gain access to photo albums.

Apple has attracted Congressional attention over its privacy policies several times in the past, once last year over location-tracking issues, and again earlier this year over the discovery that iOS app Path was uploading entire user address books to its servers.

However, The Verge reports that the photo uploading ability Schumer refers to is a bug, and a fix is on the way in an upcoming version of the iOS software.

Update: According to Senator Schumer, representatives from both Apple and Google have agreed to meet with him.

Top Rated Comments

BC2009 Avatar
118 months ago
Looks like somebody wants folks to know their name and face during an election year.
Score: 13 Votes (Like | Disagree)
ThisIsNotMe Avatar
118 months ago
He's been out Senator since 1998, and there's a good reason. He's actually not a nose-up money-hoarding snob like 9 out of 10 politicians out there. He's very much for-the-people, and he has no problem taking part in small-town events, large-scale fundraisers, and otherwise "insignificant" events that most politicians wouldn't even recognize. He's a very concerned individual, and this is one of the many examples. He does a lot that goes under the national media's radar. As we know, only the mud-slinging goes on there. He's not about that in the least.

He is "for the people" yet he voted for legislation which required every private citizen to use private money to buy a private product for personal use from a private sector company or face jail time.

He called a flight attendant a 'bitch' for doing her job.

Sounds like an upstanding Senator.......
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Lesser Evets Avatar
118 months ago
Ask Chuck Shumer if he could spend that time making a (1000 days overdue) budget for the Senate.
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
swingerofbirch Avatar
118 months ago
I've never understood how Congress can choose to get involved with these super nitty-gritty issues of life, yet the American public doesn't think they should be allowed to get involved with basic things Americans need like healthcare or investment in future industries to create jobs.
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
ThisIsNotMe Avatar
118 months ago
The country just increased it national debt by ~50% in the last 2 years, real unemployment is ~15%, real inflation is ~10%, and this ass clown is wasting time with Google and Apple over this issue?

No wonder this country is broken.
Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)
raremage Avatar
118 months ago
There is no chance in hell Schumer understands the issue. Zero. Or just about anyone in Congress, for that matter.
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

bloodoxygenapplewatch

Apple Watch Series 7 to Gain Breakthrough New Health Feature

Friday March 5, 2021 5:34 am PST by
Apple is reportedly planning to bring a new, first-of-its-kind health technology to the Apple Watch Series 7, in what could be a breakthrough for managing conditions such as diabetes more easily. According to a recent report from ETNews, the Apple Watch Series 7 will feature blood glucose monitoring via a non-invasive optical sensor. Measuring blood glucose levels, also known as blood...
apple transfer google photos 1

Apple Launches Service for Transferring iCloud Photos and Videos to Google Photos

Wednesday March 3, 2021 12:04 pm PST by
Apple this week introduced a new service that's designed to make it quick and easy for iCloud users to transfer their stored photos and videos to Google Photos. As outlined in an Apple support document, you can go to Apple's privacy website and sign in to see the "Transfer a copy of your data" option. If you select this and go through all the steps, Apple will transfer your iCloud photos and ...
imac pro featured black

Apple Confirms iMac Pro Will Be Discontinued When Supplies Run Out, Recommends 27-Inch iMac

Saturday March 6, 2021 7:33 am PST by
Apple on late Friday evening added a "while supplies last" notice to its iMac Pro product page worldwide, and removed all upgrade options for the computer, leaving only the standard configuration available to order for now. We've since confirmed with Apple that when supplies run out, the iMac Pro will no longer be available whatsoever. Apple says the latest 27-inch iMac introduced in August...
Oled iPads and MackBook Pro

OLED 10.9-Inch iPad Rumored for Early 2022, 12.9-Inch iPad Pro and 16-Inch MacBook Pro Could Follow

Thursday March 4, 2021 8:37 pm PST by
Earlier today, DigiTimes shared a preview of an upcoming report claiming that Apple is working on both iPad and Mac notebook models with OLED displays that could launch starting in 2022. The full report from DigiTimes is now available, and it includes several new alleged details about Apple's plans. According to the report, the first of these devices to adopt an OLED display is likely to be...
apple products refurbished store banner

Class Action Lawsuit Over Apple Providing Refurbished Replacement Devices Proceeding to Trial in August

Friday March 5, 2021 9:53 am PST by
Initially filed in 2016, a class action lawsuit that accuses Apple of violating the Magnusson-Moss Warranty Act, Song-Beverly Consumer Warranty Act, and other U.S. laws by providing customers with refurbished replacement devices is set to proceed to trial August 16, according to a notice this week from law firm Hagens Berman Sobol Shapiro LLP. Apple's repair terms and conditions state that,...
iPhone 13 Notch Feature2

iPhone 13 Rumor Recap: Smaller Notch, Larger Batteries, 120Hz for Pro Models, Improved 5G, Wi-Fi 6E, and More

Friday March 5, 2021 8:20 am PST by
While we are likely at least six months away from Apple unveiling the so-called iPhone 13 lineup, rumors about the devices are starting to accumulate, so we've put together this recap of everything that is expected so far. The upcoming iPhone 13 lineup will consist of the same four models and the same screen sizes as the iPhone 12 lineup, according to reputable analyst Ming-Chi Kuo,...
maxresdefault

What's on Your iPhone Home Screen?

Thursday March 4, 2021 10:31 am PST by
Over on our YouTube channel, MacRumors videographer Dan has a new video up where he shares his Home Screen, wallpaper, and all of his current favorite widgets. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. Check out Dan's video to see his setup, and then comment below and show us your own Home Screens. It's always fun to see other peoples' Home Screens, and with widgets and...
OLED iPad Pro and MacBook Pro

iPad and MacBook Models With OLED Displays Rumored to Launch in 2022

Thursday March 4, 2021 8:19 am PST by
Apple plans to release new iPad and MacBook models with OLED displays in 2022, according to industry sources cited by Taiwanese supply chain publication DigiTimes. The information was shared in the site's paywalled "Before Going to Press" section, so there are no further details yet, but the full report should be released by tomorrow. Apple has gradually increased its adoption of OLED...
Top Stories 48

Top Stories: iPhone 13 Leaks, OLED iPads and Macs, New AirTags Evidence

Saturday March 6, 2021 6:00 am PST by
iPhone rumors are heating up, with noted analyst Ming-Chi Kuo this week releasing a wide-ranging report outlining his expectations for the iPhone lineup over the next three years. This week also saw rumors about OLED displays potentially coming to iPad and Mac starting next year, increasing signs of AirTags functionality in iOS 14.5 betas, and more, so check out all of the details below! i...
imac pro while supplies last

iMac Pro No Longer Custom Configurable, Available 'While Supplies Last'

Friday March 5, 2021 10:14 pm PST by
Apple appears to be on the verge of discontinuing the iMac Pro, with the store page for the high-end all-in-one Mac including a "While supplies last" tagline and only the base model with no custom configurations available for purchase. The iMac Pro launched in December 2017, and while there have been a few tweaks to the available configurations over the years, it has received no substantial...