Apple Is Now Giving People “Trust Scores” Based on Their Calls and Emails

by | Sep 20, 2018 | Headline News | 41 comments

This information will likely not be a surprise to anyone who has been paying attention to Big Tech’s increasing propensity to violate the privacy of users and use their data for questionable reasons, but here we are.

Two days ago, the tech website Venture Beat noticed an eyebrow-raising bit in the latest update to Apple’s privacy policy:

Apple’s promise of transparency regarding user data means that any new privacy policy update might reveal that it’s doing something new and weird with your data. Alongside yesterday’s releases of iOS 12, tvOS 12, and watchOS 5, Apple quietly updated some of its iTunes Store terms and privacy disclosures, including one standout provision: It’s now using an abstracted summary of your phone calls or emails as an anti-fraud measure.

The provision, which appears in the iTunes Store & Privacy windows of iOS and tvOS devices, says:

To help identify and prevent fraud, information about how you use your device, including the approximate number of phone calls or emails you send and receive, will be used to compute a device trust score when you attempt a purchase. The submissions are designed so Apple cannot learn the real values on your device. The scores are stored for a fixed time on our servers.

Venture Beat points out that this provision is unusual, in part because it includes Apple TVs, which do not have the capability to make calls or send emails.

It is unclear how Apple is going to collect the data, and

It’s equally unclear how recording and tracking the number of calls or emails traversing a user’s iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch would better enable Apple to verify a device’s identity than just checking its unique device identifier. Every one of these devices has both hardcoded serial numbers and advertising identifiers, while iPhones and cellular iPads also have SIM cards with other device-specific codes.

An Apple spokesperson contacted Venture Beat and confirmed that the device trust score is an update included in iOS 12. It was designed to detect fraud in iTunes purchases, as well as to reduce false positives in fraud detection, the rep said. “It apparently gives Apple a better likelihood of accurately determining whether content is being bought by the actual named purchaser,” Venture Beat explains.

Apple claims that they are still going to protect user data and privacy, and said details of calls and emails will not be collected. The data will be kept for a “limited period.”

We already know that Big Tech giants like Facebook and Google collect and store massive amounts of user data. If you still use Facebook and would like to see what kind of information they have on you, here’s how to get that data. And, if you once used Facebook but have since deleted your account, don’t get too comfortable – the social media giant can still track you.

Speaking of Facebook, in August it was revealed that the social media platform rates users based on their “trustworthiness,” as reported by Engadget:

The company’s Tessa Lyons has revealed to the Washington Post that it’s starting to assign users reputation scores on a zero-to-one scale. The system is meant to help Facebook’s fight against fake news by flagging people who routinely make false claims against news outlets, whether it’s due to an ideological disagreement or a personal grudge. This isn’t the only way Facebook gauges credibility, according to Lyons — it’s just one of thousands of behavior markers Facebook is using.

What other criteria does Facebook measure to determine a user’s score? Do all users have a score? How are the scores used? These are questions that remain unanswered.

Facebook won’t reveal exactly how it evaluates users, claiming that to do so might tip off “bad actors” who would then game the system.

As Engadget writer Violet Blue recently pointed out,

The company with the reputation for being the least trustworthy is rating the trustworthiness of its users. We’d be fools to think that it hasn’t been doing this all along in other areas. Some animals are more equal than others. The thing is, Facebook long ago decided who was more trustworthy — its real customers, its advertisers. It only pretended you’d be more trustworthy if you gave them your ID.

People are abandoning social media platforms – particularly, Facebook – in record numbers, in part because so many privacy violations and data collection practices have been exposed.

Hopefully this is not a sign that humanity is heading for a Communist China, Big Brother-style social credit rating system. Just two days ago, we reported that “the Communist Party’s plan in China is for every one of its 1.4 billion citizens to be at the whim of a dystopian social credit system, and it’s on track to be fully operational by the year 2020”.

If you have watched the Netflix series Black Mirror – in particular, the episode called Nosedive – the increasing use of social credit rating systems and “trust scores” will seem eerily familiar.

If it isn’t government spying on us, it is private companies. The surveillance line is becoming more and more blurred, as tech companies increasingly give user data (sometimes forced, sometimes not) to governments upon demand. Edward Snowden exposed the existence of PRISM, under which the National Security Agency (NSA) accesses emails, documents, photographs and other sensitive users’ data stored by major companies. Documents leaked by Snowden revealed that Facebook, Google, Microsoft, Yahoo, PalTalk, AOL, Skype, YouTube and Apple give the NSA direct access to its users’ information.

Going entirely off-grid is looking more and more appealing.

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    Comments

    41 Comments

    1. Historian

      Hilarious.

      The author warns us about intrusive social media giants…

      …and then refers us to Netflix.

      Go figure.

      • Concerned

        Black Mirror acurately demonstrated human vs robot combat.
        Summary: Meatbags have no chance against current robotics.

        • The Deplorable Renegade

          Concerned, the liberals in particular will lose to the robots.

          • Manchuria

            Western version of China’s “social conscience score” to control people. Global govt has truly arrived, as we see the same corporations luanching their fascism all around the world hiding behind various brand names. Same owners at the top. Zionist 1% have arrived.

            • TharSheBlows

              The Kill Switch to all of this, is a Good effective EMP. Bring it please. My gun and bullets are EMP proof.

      • Mr. B

        And here ‘Historian’ demonstrates the main issue in relation to tech companies controlling free speech. You end up with citizens that mimic the propaganda tactics of the central planners and therefore have zero ability to construct logical arguments.

      • TharSheBlows

        And did you know Pres Obama and Condalisa Rice are both on the Corp Board of Netflix? Yes the Fix is in.

        I have NEVER rented or purchased anything from APPLE nor Netflix. And neither should you Starve the beast, Boycott all deep state and tech companies.

    2. JayJay

      ONe needs to watch this episode..it’s enlightening to see how superficial we have become.

    3. B from CA

      Prepare for the next Holodomor.

      You can not trust.

      _

      • B from CA

        Holodomor definition

        To KILL by STARVATION

        _

    4. Maranatha

      Here is the scoring criteria (parody).
      1. Is the person white -25
      2. Is the person a biological XY male -25
      3. Is the person a conservative -25
      4. Is the person a Christian -100
      5. Is the person a veteran -50

      Get the picture? Where have we seen this before? Do you recall under Obummer the DHS report that warned about the abve folks as potential white supremacists and militia members?

      They are repackaging that and rolling it out. Essentially the Internet will be just for extreme leftist Democrats or worse.

      • Fritz

        I scored -225. I’m totally screwed.

        • rayveness

          Be proud…..

        • Maranatha

          Considering all of the listed attributes and decades of prepping and subscribing to magazines and think tanks and attending survival training, etc then I would have the worst score than anyone commenting.

          They’re scared of people like me.I’m not afraid and I am very vocal.

      • TharSheBlows

        I scored Apple and Netflix both as Zeros. Never spent a dime on either. Boycotts are fun, join in.

    5. Maranatha

      https://fas.org/blogs/secrecy/2009/04/rightwing_extremism/
      This is what Apple is repackaging as a SCORE. It’s the 2009 DHS report on Right Wing Extremism. And Twitter. And Facebook. And and and.

      They are trying to pull a fast one.

      If you recall, the report was incendiary as it blamed NORMAL folks as extremists. Believing in YHWH and being a veteran equated to a “thought crime”. It’s right out of George Orwell’s 1984.

      • The Deplorable Renegade

        Well, Hillary already said I’m deplorable and Biden said I’m a dreg, so I don’t give f#$% what apple says about me. Apparently I’m doing something right.

      • Yahooie

        Seems like if we combine George Orwell’s book, “1984” and the movie, “Matrix”, we have a good idea what’s coming. It’s would take a pretty big screwdriver to jam that machine to a halt. Mother Nature is likely the one to do it.

    6. Oddfellow

      China is now beginning to do the same thing with its citizens. We haven’t seen the last of this yet.

    7. Anonymous

      I fail to understand why otherwise intelligent people find such an extreme need to use these media.

      • Yahooie

        They seek validation not given to them in other areas of their life.

    8. aljamo

      Conspiracy theorists aka truth tellers to be banned because this government has your best interests first and foremost in creating a kinder and more gentle America where all can realize the American dream or be eliminated. That dream has become survival.

    9. Fritz

      Everything you say can and will be used to determine which line you must get in when you get off the train.

    10. Him

      You don’t have to use the media in order to get a score. The NSA has everything on you. They have created an algorithm for ever American. Courtesy of Retired General Michael Hayden, former head of the CIA and NSA. He brags about starting the program. It was his baby. All of your medical records, pharmacy, phone calls, e-mails, texts, what ever you buy, where ever your car has been, your phone has been, your friends and relatives phones and cars. License plate scanners. Toss in the Deep State to make sure you never elect anyone they don’t approve of, since Trump. You ain’t voting your way out of that. Brace yo’ self. Get yo’ mind right. Let it rip.

      • Yahooie

        May I get off this merry-go-round now? I don’t like this ride anymore.

    11. Deplorable Neal Jensen

      The social credit score was originally designed and implemented by China and is in effect now. It’s no wonder at all that the tech industries directly connected to China are the ones shoving this same communist system on us now. Bleat bleat says the sheep.. Morons do nothing to stop this, just Bob their heads and go on. Americans freedom is already gone as their rulers implement increasingly more restrictive controls on speech commerce and liberty.

    12. Anonymous

      This is all a set up. What someone says or does today will be a crime in the future. Look at celebs and others who have lost careers for things allegedly done decades ago. This is what the data collection and mind control conditioning is all about.

    13. Justin Case

      I haven’t commented on any site in a long time, but for some reason – I feel like giving a hearty ‘f*** you’ to Apple.

      What are we, China?

    14. Jim in Va.

      No Apple computer,no apple phone….just need to get Google out of everything else.

      • TharSheBlows

        Cell phone, go to Google administrator and shut it off. Delete all Google apps on your computer. And for Christ sake what moron still used Gmail? You deserved to be hacked and punished if you still use any of these programs.

    15. Frank Thoughts

      Google has long had a means to identify where you are at all times and to ensure you are served only search results that keep you in the silo. This technology works like this: it geolocates you through various means: it sniffs any device you may have and pings your location in real time. Then, for example, if you are using say a friend’s laptop to search, it will know your geolocation and serve you pages only for you.

      It is extremely hard to break from this technology unless you get very far from urban areas and even then they would know that you have gone to such a remote location and the satellites would take over.

      So, what are the consequences of this technology? For example, if you are an ignorant and angry negro, they will be served all that horrible and violent garbage from Black Lies Matter and hip-hop/rap that keeps blacks all buzzing with hate. If you are white and low education, you will never find content on Harvard, or anything enlightened. If you are white and educated, you will be siloed into ‘white liberal’ ghetto or ‘white conservative’ ghetto.

      People who work for high-level institutions are kept in these siloes and can’t access the open web through their work. Their minds are heavily controlled.

      Canada is one of the worst in the West for this but other countries use this tech heavily, including everywhere in Africa and of course, China. It explains why you may have conversation with someone in Canada about the state of the world and they will seem so stupid and uninformed. It is because all they see when they search is junk about hockey games and sports.

    16. working_crass

      A couple of years ago I discovered – even though I should have twigged a lot earlier – that voice recognition software was being used by call centres to identify who you are. How – I will tell you, when a call centre agent has told you your name three times without you saying anything about yourself, and without you entering any data via the telephone keypad, and you point out that its pretty redundant you saying your name, he insists “I need you to say you name” – and this is not the only time. Here is another one for you “But … but … but, if you dont tell me what your name is Mr Jones I will not be able to know who you are Mr Jones, so tell me your name Mr Jones so that I know who you are Mr Jones – Sir!”.

      These are just two examples, and its not a recent thing either, this has been happening for years – at least 15 years.

      All of the info that they claim they need to identify is already on the screen – when is the last time you heard them typing – well? The only time you hear typing is when they are putting notes on your account – that of course they dont have any access too, and they do not under any circumstance know who is calling – so how do they accurately everytime manage to write the notes on your account?

    17. the blame-e

      So Apple has to completely strip their customer’s privacy before they will “trust” them?

      Shut this company down. We don’t need any anti-social media perverts. Already have too many pedophiles in government and Hollywood.

      All companies operating in the United States must swear an oath to serve, protect and defend the Constitution. China gets away with it. What’s good for China is good for the US.

    18. the blame-e

      Where is the algorithm that controls everything we are supposed to think, believe and feel?

      Probably in the same place as the algorithm that controls all the hate speech being spewed out by MSM and the anti-social media in their unrelenting reporting on all these endless killings being carried out by unregistered handguns in cities all across the US.

      Everybody knows that the algorithm doesn’t include how much gun violence is being carried out by black on blacks (because that would be racist and the algorithm can’t stand racism).

      The algorithm is written only to reinforce the “fact” (frequency), that only crazy people need guns.

      We have an algorithm that only reports the unemployed as those actually looking but not having a job, thus a B(L)S number of 3.9-percent.

      Everybody knows the algorithm doesn’t include, count or reflect the number of people that have either dropped out of the workforce or stopped looking for work all together.

      Because the algorithm has been written to only report on the “Recovery” and how “Everything is Awesome.”

      And on and on and on. Submission and surrender seem to be the only tipping points.

      • Frank Thoughts

        You raise a very important issue. With all the surveillance and data collection we know is going on, how come blacks can get away with being so violent and badly behaved? This is the question all of this begs.

        It can only be part of the plan that they let blacks behave that way. If large numbers of whites were so frequently violent and badly behaved that would have attracted police attention a long time ago (and the attention of the security services: think of what they do to far-right nazis, the Klan etc.). But blacks get a free pass to behave like animals (thankfully, mostly to each other).

    19. Maranatha

      The intelligence gathering by the No Such Agency is designed to be a form of Pre-Crime where crimes and suspects can be determined statistically based on risk assessment.

      There actually are computer systems called smart cities where data streams predict future crime for LEOs and mayors. They are trying to get them operation in the EU.

      Meanwhile routinely the Fusion Centers are getting collated data from multiple intel streams like universities and law enforcement and INFRAGARD informers on genuine leftists threats and not acting on them among known folks in Antifa, Black Lives Matter, and By Any Means Necessary. Thesefolks are frankly domestic terrorists who actually are committing arson, assault, and combating LEOs.

      What we now have is what George Orwell warned us about in 1984. The news media has been so coopted by the globalists that it’s the Ministry of Truth propaganda wing…openly. And then monopolies in history were busted up by the feds, but now are fostered like facebook, youtube, twitter, and so on. And these are much more economically POWERFUL than the news media. Thus even conservatives use these warped perverse social media platforms in order to sell ads and products to stay in business.

      facebook was designed by DARPA and the NSA. Look it up. Look who served on boards of directors. Why in the world would conservatives and preppers be on social media? It’s insane. You are just helping them to gather data on yourselves.

    20. Beaumont

      There is some media and themes, that I particularly like. This is generally polluted with (not very) targeted ads and agitprop.

      I don’t see myself supporting you, except through confiscatory wealth redistribution.

      search engine -> imgs -> apple suicide nets

    21. sillyfish

      How can they “Rate” my calls and emails unless they are illegally monitoring them?

      I’m going to re-read their Policy again.

    22. BillW

      Here is something you can trust apple 🖕

    23. cranerigger

      Hey Apple, keep up this drivel and we will find different sources for buying products. My family has an iMac, iPad, and other devices because we believed those products were superior. If you continue to want our dollars, be very careful with your intrusion into our privacy. Lots of other good products out there.

    24. awed bawl

      . . .this Corporate/State bugging you? You think it wrong? On what grounds, sez I? Violates rights, sez you. Well, I’m waiting for someone to say it. . .

      The USofA has not been based on Individual Rights for a LONG time- since the early 19th century. The Socialist public schools have the same premise as the spying today- YOU ARE STATE PROPERTY TO BE USED FOR STATE PURPOSES. Freedom is merely a permission from the State.

      Individualism was jettisoned LONG ago but our Masters forgot to tell us- we might have refused the offer. . .

      The Statist setup of today- long endorsed by liberals AND conservatives. . .today’s crapola is the logical extension of just one idea- that the “State” is higher than individuals, and they may be enslaved for any reason.

      SOCIETY IS EITHER 1) BASED ON INDIVIDUAL RIGHTS 2) BASED ON TOTALITARIANISM

      “Third way” or mixed economy is totalitarian, as it is still based on State being above individual

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