Man asks Siri to help him hide a body, Siri helps prosecute him

Man asks Siri to help him hide a body, Siri helps prosecute him

A Florida man accused of killing his roommate reportedly asked Siri for help on how and where to hide the body. The original response that query generated, long since removed by Apple, offered classic pulp fiction locations such as swamps, reservoirs, foundries, and dumps. (The query now returns "I used to know the answer to that question...") Yet that same question, along with other data such as flashlight usage and location, are now being offered into evidence by prosecutors at trial. The Independent:

Evidence collected from Bravo's iPhone includes records of him using the phone's flashlight function nine times from 11.31pm to 12:01am on the day that Bravo disappeared and asking the phone: "I need to hide my roommate".

It's good that Apple changed Siri's response. There's no joke that can't become deadly serious in the wrong hands, head, and circumstances.

The trial is ongoing.

Now forgive me if I go and try to make myself feel better about humanity again by getting Siri to read me a bedtime story...

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Rene Ritchie

EiC of iMore, EP of Mobile Nations, Apple analyst, co-host of Debug, Iterate, Vector, Review, and MacBreak Weekly podcasts. Cook, grappler, photon wrangler. Follow him on Twitter and Google+.

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Reader comments

Man asks Siri to help him hide a body, Siri helps prosecute him


Oh yah, you thought Google was the boogie man. NO, all these companies including apple track everything done on the phone. Got to have it just in case something goes wrong then we can use that data to fix a bug in the software.

Presumably law enforcement got physical custody of the phone and it wasn't wiped. That plus a warrant will likely get them any and all diagnostic and usage information stored on that phone.

(Apple has a page up on this, though apparently the process takes months.)

That's actually a bit creepy that Apple can tell how often I use the flashlight on my phone! Do they monitor my porn use too? Seriously tho that's creepy.

People got all worried about their email when that guy got in trouble for child porn. If your doing something wrong you might get caught. Plain and simple.

Well, stats are recorded on every device for usage and to send reports to Apple. When you phone crashes or you have a problem, how do you think they figure out what it is? The phone has to store data and app usage to figure out what's wrong with it. You can choose to send it to Apple if you're doing support over the phone or online, when seeing a genius you enable the data to be sent to their iPad, laptop or other device to trouble shoot.

if the cops get a warrant and have your phone as part of that warrant then legally they can get the same type of usage data off of your phone.

This data being stored on my phone doesn't scare me, it allows for trouble shooting when stuff goes wrong. I hope the tin-foil hats don't come out today.

I agree but many are not going to like that the siri search info is being logged as well. It doesn't state it but I bet they have the entire voice recording of this guy asking siri where to hide the body.

hmm.. that link states Apple can only collect: SMS, photos, videos, contacts, audio recording, and call history. Apple cannot provide: email, calendar entries, or any third-party App data. Just another data point of Apple not being completely truthful with regards to privacy. That said, I don't think they went through Apple to collect the data as the defense attorney only attacked Verizon.

I disagree with the idea that this is "wrong" and that it's a good thing that Apple removed the joke.

Censorship is rarely, if ever a good thing overall, and the original answer was an obvious joke that gave no information that a user wouldn't already be aware of simply by watching the average TV show. The idea that Siri's "suggestions" would in any way contribute to a murder, or give the murderer any help in committing their crime is ludicrous.

Instead, the "information" (the joke), was removed (censored), because it made people "feel bad" or "upset people," which is quite literally the WORST reason to censor anything and not really a reason at all.

This kind of censorship never does anything to assuage the people who complain about these kind of jokes in the first place because those people are almost permanently "offended." It also never does anything to truly hide the joke or information and "protect" those who *might* be similarly offended but instead, highlights the fact that something is being censored and encourages the user to go look for the missing information.

This is more "editorial discretion" than "censorship".

Censorship is most often ascribed to a third-party, especially government, forcing the removal of something. Like banning a book or preventing a story from being published.

The New York Times has every right to refuse to publish my articles. Likewise they have every right to modify their headlines if and when they decide there's reason to.

Apple deciding this joke wasn't in anyone's best interests, including their own, smacks not of censorship at all, but of editorial discretion properly exercised.

THIS... bloggers don't seem to bother to check facts. He did not use Siri, he just searched on his iPhone 4. Even many of the news sites used images that were stock photos and had nothing to do with the actual events. No one seems to care, as long as they are entertained. /sigh

Criminals get caught, because they are dumb. Case in point. Man ties chain to bumper, then to a store door. Takes off, bumper came off. He left. When cops knock on his door, he wanted to know how they found out. His tag was attached to the bumper. Saw this in the news.

Sent from the iMore App

If you think about its a good thing apple lets say 'stalk' us because let's say an idiot like this does the same again they can tell and prosquit them and punish them.

Where it's bad cos lets say u want privacy you want to ummmm you know and photos and everything this is where stalking is the word I will youse