Software // Enterprise Applications
12:20 PM
Connect Directly

iTunes' Privacy Problem

iTunes screenshotApple Computer's release last week of the iTunes 6.02 update quickly earned the nickname "SpyTunes" among bloggers.

The upgrade includes a feature called the MiniStore that offers song recommendations in exchange for a bit of cash--and privacy.

The MiniStore bases its song suggestions on music played by the user. Because those songs are stored on the user's computer, iTunes has to transmit that information to other computers, including those run by marketing firm Omniture, to generate a related suggested purchase. Apple, which declined to comment, does this without explicit user notice or consent, so it's arguably a privacy violation--and inarguably a bad idea. Omniture expects its customers (like Apple) to disclose such things to their customers, VP Gail Ennis says.

Companies are always looking for ways to get closer to customers, and personalized search will be an increasingly important route. But as Apple is finding out, not disclosing all the details can spell trouble.

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
Building A Mobile Business Mindset
Building A Mobile Business Mindset
Among 688 respondents, 46% have deployed mobile apps, with an additional 24% planning to in the next year. Soon all apps will look like mobile apps and it's past time for those with no plans to get cracking.
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
White Papers
Current Issue
Top IT Trends to Watch in Financial Services
IT pros at banks, investment houses, insurance companies, and other financial services organizations are focused on a range of issues, from peer-to-peer lending to cybersecurity to performance, agility, and compliance. It all matters.
Twitter Feed
InformationWeek Radio
Archived InformationWeek Radio
Join us for a roundup of the top stories on for the week of October 9, 2016. We'll be talking with the editors and correspondents who brought you the top stories of the week to get the "story behind the story."
Sponsored Live Streaming Video
Everything You've Been Told About Mobility Is Wrong
Attend this video symposium with Sean Wisdom, Global Director of Mobility Solutions, and learn about how you can harness powerful new products to mobilize your business potential.
Flash Poll