If you work for IBM, you are welcome to bring your iPhone 4S to work with you but forget about using Apple's voice driven digital assistant, Siri. IBM has banned the use of Siri on all of its networks due to concerns over privacy. Siri works by sending anything you ask it to a data center in North Carolina; after that, no one really knows exactly what happens with that data once it has been dealt with. Is it deleted once it has been dealt with, is it stored temporarily or is it kept forever?
IBM CIO Jeanette Horan told MIT's Technology Review this week that her company has banned Siri outright because, according to the magazine, "The company worries that the spoken queries might be stored somewhere." It turns out that Horan is right to worry. In fact, Apple's iPhone Software License Agreement spells this out: "When you use Siri or Dictation, the things you say will be recorded and sent to Apple in order to convert what you say into text," Apple says. Siri collects a bunch of other information — names of people from your address book and other unspecified user data, all to help Siri do a better job.
No one knows how long this data is kept by Apple or who has access to it, Apple doesn't say either, its user agreement only states "By using Siri or Dictation, you agree and consent to Apple's and its subsidiaries' and agents' transmission, collection, maintenance, processing, and use of this information, including your voice input and User Data, to provide and improve Siri, Dictation, and other Apple products and services."
Siri's original lead developer Edward Wrenbeck confirms that privacy was always a big concern and the fact that Siri could provide information on your location alone could be enough to violate a non-disclosure agreement. Of course this in no different to many other apps currently available or in fact, the internet in general.
Do you think IBM is right to be concerned over who can gain access to this information and do you have privacy concerns of your own while using Siri?
Apple celebrates 15 'App Store Best Of 2020' winners
Apple has announced 15 App Store Best Of 2020 awards winners including some names you'll know and some you might not.
Unread 2.4 brings improved widgets and a re-worked interface
RSS is far from dead and Unread is one of the best ways to read your feeds. Unread 2.4 makes it even better!
Meet Addy and Michael in the latest 'Stillwater' Apple TV+ trailer
The wise panda is always helping his friends and this trailer is all about them.
Mix it up with 50 smart accessories that work with Alexa and HomeKit
Splitting your smart home accessories between HomeKit and Alexa ensures that you will always have access even if you decide to switch up your phone. Here's 50 flexible accessories that work with both voice assistants.