Apple is taking active steps to dam Facebook’s data collection practices.

The Safari-maker said Monday that it’ll provide users the flexibility to prevent Facebook, Google and other platforms from trailing them across the web through “like” and “share” buttons.

The announcement is Apple’s most important counter yet to Facebook’s data collection practices, and comes after years in which Apple executives have criticized Facebook as reckless with user privacy.

“We’ve all seen these like buttons and share buttons,” Apple software VP Craig Federighi said at the company’s annual developer conference. “Well it seems, these will be used to track you, whether or not you click on them or not. so this year, we’re closing that down.”

When safari users arrive at a page with a Facebook like, a pop-up window will appear that asks: “Do you want to permit ‘’ to use cookies and website data while browsing [this site]? this will enable ‘’ to track your activity.”

Facebook’s chief security officer Alex Stamos instantly took issue with the move, questioning on Twitter whether or not it had been a serious effort to guard privacy or “just cute virtue signaling.”

Apple has place a premium on user privacy for years. In 2010, then-CEO Steve Jobs said Apple had “always had a very totally different read of privacy than some of our colleagues in the valley.”

“Privacy suggests that individuals know what they are signing up for, in plain English and repeatedly,” Jobs said. “I believe individuals are sensible and some individuals wish to share more information than other people do. Ask them. ask them every time. … let them understand exactly what you are going to do with their data.”

Current Apple chief executive officer Tim Cook has came to this theme in recent months as Facebook has return under fire for its collection of a huge amount of user data and its failure to protect that data from abuse by third parties — most notably Cambridge Analytica.

In an interview with CNN’s Laurie Segall on Monday, Cook said, “I assume that the privacy issue has gotten completely out of control and that i think most of the people aren’t alert to who is tracking them, what proportion {they’re|they are} being tracked and therefore the massive amounts of elaborated data that are out there about them … we think privacy is a fundamental right.”

Facebook has made itself susceptible to Apple’s criticism. less than 24 hours before Apple’s conference, the new york Times reported that Facebook’s data-sharing partnerships with device makers, including Apple, were still in effect despite Facebook’s claim that they’d cut off such data sharing in 2015.

Meanwhile, Apple has confiscated the opportunity to forged itself as the best behaved player in tech. in addition to the new privacy measures, Apple also introduced new features which will encourage users to limit the amount of time they spend on their phones.

“[Apps] try to draw us in for fear of missing out,” Federighi said. “We might not even recognize how distracted we’ve become.”

-credit – cnnmoney


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