Tim Cook defends Apple taking billions from Google after his blistering attack on data hoarding tech firms

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  • Apple CEO Tim Cook has defended taking billions of dollars from Google to make it the default search engine on the iPhone.
  • Cook was asked by Axios if the deal compromises Apple’s no-nonsense approach to privacy.
  • Google has been blighted by a number of privacy concerns in recent months, including a Google+ data breach.
  • Cook launched a blistering attack last month on firms that he said hoarded “industrial” amounts of personal data.

Tim Cook defended taking billions of dollars from Google amid concerns that the partnership undermines Apple’s no-nonsense approach to privacy.

Google pays Apple more than $9 billion a year to be the default search engine on the iPhone, according to a Goldman Sachs estimate seen by Business Insider.

But Google has been blighted by a number of privacy concerns in recent months. The company shut down its Google+ social network for consumers in October after 500,000 accounts were breached, while Associated Press found in August that Google services on iPhone stored location data even when users told them not to.

Despite the recent furors, Apple CEO Cook stood by its deal with Google when asked if it compromised Apple’s privacy believes. He told “Axios on HBO” on Sunday:

“I think their search engine is the best. Look at what we’ve done with the controls we’ve built in. We have private web browsing. We have an intelligent tracker prevention. What we’ve tried to do is come up with ways to help our users through their course of the day. It’s not a perfect thing. I’d be the very first person to say that. But it goes a long way to helping.”

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Cook has long espoused Apple’s approach to privacy as a “fundamental human right.” He has been vocal about the company’s record as rivals, including Facebook and Google, have been dragged into scandals this year.

Cook launched a blistering attack last month on firms that hoard “industrial” amounts of personal data. Speaking at a privacy conference in Brussels, he said the stockpiling of personal data amounted to surveillance and should make us “very uncomfortable.”

“Our own information, from the everyday to the deeply personal, is being weaponized against us with military efficiency,” he said, calling for “comprehensive federal privacy law” in the US.

Cook did not mention Facebook or Google by name, but they were an obvious target given they have access to giant pools of personal information that allow them to personalize advertising.

Source: Business Insider

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