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iCensor: Apple Patents Remote 'Kill Switch' for iPhone Cameras


iCensor: Apple Patents Remote 'Kill Switch' for iPhone Cameras

Nika Knight, staff writer

Owning an iPhone could someday mean being blocked from recording anything that someone in power doesn't want you to record.

"Corporations aren't friends of the people, corporations are friends of money."
—Edward Snowden
That's the potential ramification of a patent granted to Apple earlier this week for technology that remotely disables iPhone cameras by infrared sensors.


If Apple goes through with this, they will do a big favor for camera manufacturers. (I'm glad I hung onto my old manual SLR and darkroom equipment.) There's more than one way to skin a weasel.


How about a kill switch that will prevent US tv channels from broadcasting their beloved violence, insanity and stupidity?


Better buy more knives, too. There's lots of large and small weasels, everywhere.


Shocking revelation by Snowden. I thought " Bomb Train " Buffet, Monsanto, Boeing, et al were just misunderstood. And, Takata's exploding airbags are just meant to keep you working 60 hour weeks to save up for that next new car. You know, the really nice one with new Takata airbags and styled to look like a Corvair.:wink:


Call this a censorship switch because that is what is being developed step by step. A kill switch is seemingly primitive. Next step is selective kill switches which disable certain individual phones only. Next step after that are Kill Switch Zones where once you enter that area or corporate building etc then your phone cannot record.

Please pay the required recording fee to enable your phone's camera to shoot pictures of the Grand Canyon from the visitor center's photography promenade.


The state is always looking out for your best interests. But , don't take my word for it. Just ask the soldiers in Arlington Cemetery or the unknown homeless dead in every morque in every major city in America. " So wave the flag and take a stand. He says he's your friend, a friend of the common man. "


Apple is about to lose a lot of customers and camera shops are about to become very popular.


Apple admitted a number of years ago that the iPhone randomly took pics without the user's knowledge. The pics were uploaded to Apple's servers.


I've got to buy a gocam.


Hackers to the rescue! An ap that kills the kill switch!

"Installing this ap violates Apple's Terms of Service, and will render your phone a brick. Payments due on your contract remain in tact, regardless of carrier. Apple loves you, just remember."


Exactly where this is all headed.


Your theory that a cellphone owner can thwart intrusive and undesired snooping simply by turning off features such as mobile data, Bluetooth or Wi-Fi won't work.

Any feature, app or service can be remotely controlled. Even if you turn off the cellphone itself, it can be turned on remotely.

It is a given that certain governmental and corporate entities have programs that routinely extract and collect info via cellphones using remote access. This includes, inter alia, real-time audio and video, GPS-related info, stored data and meta-data.


Some phones still allow you to remove the battery which does prevent remote actions affecting your phone. Not iPhones btw.

However this article points out not the information they can get without your permission but the ingormation that they will not allow you to get without their permission. A kill switch is a first step more than an a end goal. Eventually they will remotely decide content and perhaps reception for individuals. A cell phone version of the no fly list. As that remote control capability matures and content is controlled and restricted - as functionality too is controlled and restricted - we may look back at this time as the last free internet era. We may if we are allowed to access that content that is!


"and we assume that same technology can be used to turn the camera on, for the government to spy on you."

Apple isn't planning on making millions by selling this technology to rock stars, that's for sure.


Will this affect phones running Android? If not (and I assume not), bye bye Apple for a lot of users. Can't wait for Ubuntu to start selling their phone in the US.


I think someone will develop a pocket camera (like, credit card size), that does video. You could put it on a keychain. Maybe there's something out there already? ETA, yep, they are available and CHEAP.


I have more faith in the young folk. I have no doubt that people will come up with methods to block the block signal.

Then there is always the option of buying other products. Apple either gives you the option of turning this feature off, or they lose business.


Don't buy Apple products. Simple.


Apple loves security. Unfortunately, not yours.