In an interview held on Thursday night by Fast Company, Apple CEO Tim Cook was asked to talk about privacy, more specifically user’s data privacy.
Cook ranked privacy as one of the most important issue these days, equal to climate change.
“In terms of privacy, I think it is one of the top issues of the century, we’ve got climate change — that is huge. We’ve got privacy — that is huge… And they should be weighted like that and we should put our deep thinking into that and to decide how can we make these things better and how do we leave something for the next generation that is a lot better than the current situation.” – Tim Cook said
Following his statement, he went on to demonstrate the power of a very controversial feature that is planned to be released in the spring. Apple’s App Tracking Feature is soon going to allow users to opt out of the ad tracking system and oblige developers to ask for permission before enabling any sort of tracking algorithm.
“I try to get somebody to think about what happens in a world where you know that you’re being surveilled all the time. What changes do you then make in your own behavior? What do you do less of? What do you not do anymore? What are you not as curious about anymore if you know that each time you’re on the web, looking at different things, exploring different things, you’re going to wind up constricting yourself more and more and more and more? That kind of world is not a world that any of us should aspire to.”
On the other hand, Cook seemed less than worried about Artificial Intelligence, a technology that Elon Musk believes to be the downfall of humanity.
Tim Cook said that we will need to have “ethical AI” in our lives, just as ethical data collection, as they’re developing, along side with technology itself.
“I think both of those can be used for bad things and can be amplified by technology, And so which one is above the other one? I don’t know. I would say we can’t let ourselves just choose one of those two to focus on. We have to have ethical AI, just like we have to have ethical data privacy and data collection. There’s an intersection of those two as well, right? Both are paramount and have to be worked on.”
The full interview and more details about Cook’s interview with Fast company can be found here.