Gus Hurwitz interviewed in Pacific Standard article on Apple’s FaceTime security issue
In an interview with Pacific Standard Gus Hurwitz explains how Apple’s FaceTime security issue is a software bug and not a privacy violation:
New York State is investigating Apple’s failure to promptly warn its customers about a FaceTime bug that allowed callers to eavesdrop on those they dialed, even if the call wasn’t answered. On Wednesday, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo and state Attorney General Letitia James announced the probe, which will look into whether Apple’s seemingly laggard response to the security issue violated consumer-protection laws.
The FaceTime security issue—already nicknamed FacePalm by security experts—was discovered last week by a mother and son in Arizona. If a FaceTime call was initiated and the caller added themselves to a Group FaceTime conversation, the initial call recipient’s phone would immediately begin transmitting audio, even if they never picked up. According to the New York Times, the mother and son in Arizona spent a week trying in futility to alert Apple to the issue, before 9to5Mac, an Apple news site, reported on the bug on Monday, prompting the company to disable the Group FaceTime feature.
“It’s really important to start by emphasizing that this is a bug that led to a security problem. This is not—I cannot emphasize enough—a privacy violation.” – Gus Hurwitz