China: Child labour and iPhone paranoia

14 July 2014

china Unsurprisingly, there's some strange news coming out of China.

The first bit of news is that Chinese state media have warned their people that Apple's iPhone is a threat to national security. Why? Well, iPhones can track you and transmit data back to the firm, which of course is paranoid and wei... hang on.

China might have a point there.

A report on China Central Television (yes, the acronym for that is 'CCTV', which is just hilarious really) said that the iPhone's "Frequent Locations" function was dangerous and intrusive to Chinese citizens. "This is extremely sensitive data," a researcher told CCTV, before adding that iPhones could well tell everyone about the Chinese economy and "even state secrets".

Cast your mind back to Edward Snowden's claims that he once taught a course in "cyber-counterintelligence" against China, and things that may have been dismissed as the hootings of crackpots look far more probable.

Apple's notes on the Frequent Locations service says: "Your iPhone will keep track of places you have recently been, as well as how often and when you visited them, in order to learn places that are significant to you. This data is kept solely on your device and won't be sent to Apple without your consent. It will be used to provide you with personalized services, such as predictive traffic routing."

CCTV have previously referred to Apple as "incomparably arrogant", which is also funny.

However, Samsung have been pointing at China, saying that they've found evidence of "suspected child labour" at a factory of one of their suppliers. Say hello to our old pals at Dongguan Shinyang Electronics again!

Samsung undertook an investigation after the group China Labor Watch accused them of hiring children, with the tech-makers suspending business with the factory while they look into everything.

"If the investigations conclude that the supplier indeed hired children illegally, Samsung will permanently halt business with the supplier in accordance with its zero tolerance policy on child labour," Samsung said in a statement. "Furthermore, Samsung will strengthen its hiring process not only at its production facilities but also at its suppliers to prevent such case from reoccurring."

Dongguan Shinyang Electronics have decided to stay quiet for the time being.

So there you have it. In China, it seems it is okay to work children like dogs, but if you tell Americans about their whereabouts, then you're 'incomparably arrogant'.

TOPICS:   Mobile   World News

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