Apple has been facing a lot of criticism over its planned launch of software that would scan user’s iPhone libraries to detect images of child exploitation or abuse. The company was facing a backlash from privacy campaigners. And now it has decided to delay its plan and modify the new system. The software was expected to be launched by the end of this year. “We announced our new features that were intended to put a brake on incidents of child abuse. The feature was an important update as there are some predators who exploit girls by using communication tools. The feature would have helped in limiting the spread of abusive material,” the company said.
“But we have now decided to take some more time so that we can collect input and make desired improvements before releasing the software. The company has made this decision based on the inputs provided by customers, advocacy groups, and researchers. This is why such a decision has been taken,” the company said. Apple found itself in hot water immediately after it talked about the software that would check users’ devices. People were quick to point out that the decision was in sharp contrast with the company’s customer privacy. There were people who looked divided over the decision.
While groups that advocate privacy claim this as a victory, there are others who are not happy with the decision. Some child protection campaigners have expressed their unhappiness over the decision. One of the child protection activists said that Apple ‘should have stood their ground’ and the decision take by the tech giant is extremely disappointing. It must be noted that the original proposal presented by Apple was welcomed by officials in the United States and the United Kingdom. But it caused quite a stir in Silicon Valley. Craig Federighi, Apple’s senior vice-president of software engineering, agreed that the message conveyed regarding the software was a little confusing.