Craig Federighi talks Apple's commitment to privacy in keynote speech

Craig Federighi Wwdc 2020 Privacy
Craig Federighi Wwdc 2020 Privacy (Image credit: Apple)

What you need to know

  • Craig Federighi, Apple's senior vice president of software engineering, gave a keynote speech today.
  • The executive talked about privacy at the European Data Protection & Privacy Conference.

The European Data Protection & Privacy Conference kicked off virtually today, and Apple's own Craig Federighi, the company's senior vice president of software engineering, served as the keynote speaker of the event.

Reported by 9to5Mac, Federighi spoke about Apple's commitment to privacy, which has been commonly called a "fundamental human right" by the company.

While many companies have become data-centric in their business model, Apple has taken the opposite approach and purposefully attempts to collect as little data as possible. Federighi pointed this out, saying that most companies are taking the wrong approach.

Now, others take the opposite approach. They gather, sell, and hoard as much of your personal information as they can. The result is a data-industrial complex, where shadowy actors work to infiltrate the most intimate parts of your life and exploit whatever they can find—whether to sell you something, to radicalize your views, or worse. That's unacceptable. And the solution has to start with not collecting the data in the first place.

Apple iPhone Privacy Ad

Apple iPhone Privacy Ad (Image credit: Apple)

The executive says that data minimization is one of "four key principles" Apple lives by, with the other three being:

Second, to avoid the risks of moving data off device, Apple processes as much of your data on your device as possible. Data that stays on your own device is data that you control.Third, when data is collected by Apple, we make that transparent, and we help you control how it's used.And fourth, we see security as the foundation for all of our privacy protections. If your data isn't secure, it's not going to stay private. And our unique model of integrated hardware and software is key to enabling these strong protections.

Federighi also reiterated Apple's commitment to removing apps that did not follow its new privacy policies which are beginning to roll out now and will continue to do so next year.

Its aim is to empower our users to decide when or if they want to allow an app to track them in a way that could be shared across other companies' apps or websites. To do that, early next year, we'll begin requiring all apps that want to do that to obtain their users' explicit permission, and developers who fail to meet that standard can have their apps taken down from the App Store.

Federighi concluded the speech by pointing out the "false tradeoff" of sacrificing privacy for features and that the long term goal must be one of building trust, not data.

I hope that we will be remembered not just for the devices we developed, and what they enabled people to do; but also for helping humanity enjoy the benefits of this great technology… without requiring that they give up their privacy to do it. It's in our power today to end that false tradeoff… to build, for the long term, not just a foundation of technology, but a foundation of trust.

Watch the full keynote address below:

Joe Wituschek

Joe Wituschek is a Contributor at iMore. With over ten years in the technology industry, one of them being at Apple, Joe now covers the company for the website. In addition to covering breaking news, Joe also writes editorials and reviews for a range of products. He fell in love with Apple products when he got an iPod nano for Christmas almost twenty years ago. Despite being considered a "heavy" user, he has always preferred the consumer-focused products like the MacBook Air, iPad mini, and iPhone 13 mini. He will fight to the death to keep a mini iPhone in the lineup. In his free time, Joe enjoys video games, movies, photography, running, and basically everything outdoors.