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Apple To Delay Rollout Of Its New Child Safety Features Following Criticism

Apple To Delay Rollout Of Its New Child Safety Features Following Criticism
Following criticism of Apple Inc’s proposed child safety features both outside and inside the company over the issue of privacy of the system, the iPhone maker announced that it would postpone implementation of the feature for collecting more feedback on the system so that the system can be improved.
Last month. Apple had announced its new system that would check iPhones and computers of customers in the United States for child sex abuse images which sparked a global criticism and backlash of the proposal from a wide range of rights groups. It was reported that the plan was also criticised internally by Apple employees.
According to critics of the plan, the proposed new feature could be used by repressive governments and exploit the feature to find other material for censorship or arrests and outside researchers would find it impossible to check whether only a small set of on-device content were being checked by Apple.
The arguments were countered by Apple, saying that the new feature and system would allow security researchers to verify the claims made by the company. However, on Friday, Apple said that it would require or time to collect and implement changes to the system to make it better.
"Based on feedback from customers, advocacy groups, researchers and others, we have decided to take additional time over the coming months to collect input and make improvements before releasing these critically important child safety features," the company said in a statement.
Thee Apple's move was "promising", said Matthew Green, a cybersecurity researcher at Johns Hopkins University who was one of the critics of this latest proposed feature from Apple.
Apple should "be clear about why you’re scanning and what you’re scanning. Going from scanning nothing (but email attachments) to scanning everyone’s private photo library was an enormous delta. You need to justify escalations like this", Green said on Twitter.
It was weeks that its new proposed plan was being vigorously defended by Apple and a series of explanations and documents that it claimed displayed that there were low chances of false detections using the proposed system were made available by the company.
Initially the company had planned to roll out the new feature for its iPhones, iPads, and Mac with plans of releasing software updates later this year in the United States.

Christopher J. Mitchell

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