“Your Computer Isn’t Yours” - Mac Privacy

With the release of Bug Sur and the OSCP issues a lot is being revealed about the way Apple is monitoring computer use and behavior. Furthermore, they’re limiting your ability to control the way your machine functions on Big Sur by limiting your ability to control certain processes. This is very alarming. The article below is the best one that I’ve found explaining the issues. Thinking really hard about wether or not I’m jumping ship…

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Since I’ve deferred my plans to live a life of crime and terror, I think I’ll be OK with the status quo for a while.

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Build your own Linux computer, always hide behind your own vpn lock down firewall and modify Firefox to the point where it barely works.
Better yet use TOR and frequently move around to use others ISP,. Meanwhile keep your cellphone turned off inside a faraday bag…

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Has nothing to do with crime or doing anything nefarious. Apple simply doesn’t have the right or need to know; not to mention all of the ways this information could be abused…

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Yeah, I know how to do all of this. I shouldn’t have to. That’s the problem…

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Any article that cite Stallman and Doctorow as references without any kind of caveats automatically gets “conspiracy theory” suspicious in my book. I would not trust the former with a healthy view of what freedom is, and the second has made his name on loudly wanting to destroy the copyright system while making ample royalties thanks to said system. (I am old enough to remember how his first book was marketed.)

Although I am really dismayed to hear about your plans, @quorm. I was really looking forward to learning about the life of Mac Power Criminal. :grin:

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It’s interesting to notice how everybody who’s usually so enthusiastic about Apple’s privacy policies (and opposed to ’ evil’ Google and all the ‘spying’ they do in Android) all of a sudden doesn’t give a damn about this.

The issues with the weird - mostly obscure - ocsp certificate system yesterday make clear how bad it is to have such processes on you private computer. Just think what everybody (on this forum) would have said if this was Microsoft (or Google) instead of Apple.

And yes, I was one of the people who spent more than an hour on system maintenance, including booting in safe mode, and uninstalling recent updates because my computer all of a sudden didn’t work properly anymore. :frowning:

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I was too. I lost an evening of productive work I was counting on.
On the other hand, I’ve lost way more running Windows.
Not saying this absolves Apple entirely, and I would definitely like to see them improve this, but this is the Gatekeeper mechanism we’re talking about, not the deliberate “telemetry” Windows 10 collects and you can’t opt out of.

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The ‘feature’ in Big Sur the article at the top of this thread refers to seems to be not too different from MS’s “telemetry”. Collecting (personal) data without the ability to opt-out is not something I’m in favor of.

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You can opt out by turning off Gatekeeper.

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Well, as I said, I am extremely wary of everything that quotes Stallman and Doctorow (I have seen the damage this one has caused up close) as gospel, and I have resolved it’s not time yet for me to pick up a pitchfork.

Yes, and by the way, it seems this still works on M1 Macs too.

I just posted one article. What makes this conspiracy theory? It’s literally all over the security community.

The right approach may have been to make this ‘opt-in’. Or include this as part of the ‘send diagnostics’ opt in when installing Mac OS.

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I’m saying that everything that quotes Stallman and Doctorow as gospel lacks a balanced view in my opinion.

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I don’t really think you want to make malware protection require extra effort on the part of the user to opt into.

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This is a side-effect of the Gatekeeper mechanism, not resolute telemetry like Microsoft transmits. Now, we can argue if Gatekeeper was the right call, if the way it’s implemented makes sense, and so on but the base of the discussion is not that Apple is spying on the user, but that a system integrity feature may have been stupidly and dangerously implemented. Which is an issue, don’t get me wrong, it’s just not the one the article speaks about. And proves exactly why calls to Stallman and Doctorow should raise intellectual caution.

Proof of this: disconnect your computer from the Internet and all works fine. And so far, there are no reports saying that macOS transmits the “missing” telemetry when it goes back online. Gatekeeper checks running code on the fly, communicating with Apple servers, which I find a bad design, but it’s not an evil design.

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Stop it. That information isn’t required to protect the machine from malware. There are literally TONS of products on the market that take this approach without doing this.

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Given the relative prevalence of malware on macOS and Windows, Apple seems to have the more effective approach.

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I don’t think you’re understanding the issue. You simply don’t need all of this information to combat Malware. It that was Apple’s intention you certainly don’t send that type of telemetry in the clear and you don’t do things like weaken VPN’s or block users from being able to opt out if “security” is what you had in mind.

FYI - Microsoft is running circles around their competitors from a cyber perspective right now. Particularly when it comes to cloud. You don’t see it in consumer circles, but it will trickle down.