Apple is facing increasing criticism for kowtowing to China in order to increase sales in the country.
Last week Apple pulled, then reinstated the HKmap Lie app in the China Apple App Store. People’s Daily, China’s official state news publication, has called Apple’s reinstating of the HKmap Live app an “unwise and reckless decision.” The tech giant recently reinstated the HKmap Live app, which uses crowdsourcing to track police vehicles, armed officers and incidents in which people have been injured. Apple claims it’s simply following local laws.
Now Apple’s Fraudulent Website Warning feature in Safari for iOS and Mac has come under scrutiny for sending some IP addresses from users of its Safari browser on iOS to Chinese conglomerate Tencent – a company with close ties to the Chinese Communist Party.
The tech giant admits that it sends some user IP addresses to Tencent in the “About Safari & Privacy” section of its Safari settings which can be accessed on an iOS device by opening the Settings app and then selecting “Safari > About Privacy & Security.” Under the title “Fraudulent Website Warning.”
Also, Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman has received a statement from Apple saying that “the actual URL of a website you visit is never shared with a safe browsing provider and the feature can be turned off.”
Apple has also has appeased China by hiding the Taiwan flag emoji on iOS devices that have the China region set. China won’t accept trade agreements with anyone who recognizes Taiwan as an independent nation.