Apple is in the news (again) about their popular iPhone feature FaceTime.
Earlier this week, the tech giant experienced a “glitch,” which enabled users to eavesdrop on phone calls before the call was picked up, while using the video-chatting software that comes with the mobile device. The nation was in an upheaval, as millions experienced the inconvenience of the glitch. Many took to social media to express their outrage.
Lol this #AppleBug is no joke. I’m not taking no risks so I turned it off. Anyone wanna facetime me. Gimme untill they fix this bug.
— Fatimaaaa ? (@evaislovingg) January 30, 2019
Apple, not as innocent as we thought! Time for a refocus from Facebook! ⌚#applebug
— Ax Zell (@ax_zell) January 29, 2019
According to the New York Times, Apple knew almost two weeks ago that they had a bug in their product. Michelle Thompson, mother of a 14-year-old, noticed the issue on January 19. After noticing the problem, she then notified Apple Support about the incident. Thompson, who is a lawyer, was not only concerned about the personal privacy of her family, but stated that bug was “major security flaw.” Many believe that this window should have been enough time for Apple to have fixed the bug.
Thompson’s son, Grant, first noticed he could eavesdrop on his friends and shared the information with his mother. His mother created a video of the young man using the feature and what appeared to be him eavesdropping, and sent it to Apple the next day. No one responded and this caused alarm. She tried to reach them by phone, email, fax and social media (both Twitter and Facebook). Days later, an Apple’s product security team member encouraged Ms. Thompson to go through the website and make a formal report as a developer.
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By Monday, the defect on FaceTime that could have been corrected, violated iPhone user’s privacy across the country. Apple’s negligence in moving swiftly to handle this problem has sparked new concerns about their commitment to their customers’ security. Tim Cook, Apple’s CEO, suggests that the company is doing what they can to protect those who use their products. He tweeted in response to situation, “We all must insist on action and reform for vital privacy protections.”
We must keep fighting for the kind of world we want to live in. On this #DataPrivacyDay let us all insist on action and reform for vital privacy protections. The dangers are real and the consequences are too important.
— Tim Cook (@tim_cook) January 28, 2019