Apple simultaneously announced the latest privacy and security innovations at its developer conference in Taipei on the 6th, including major updates to Safari’s “Private Browsing”, “Communication Security” and “Closed Mode”, as well as enhancements to app privacy. In addition, Apple introduced new features designed with privacy and security at its core, including Safety Notification, NameDrop, and Live Voicemail.
App Privacy Upgrade
The new tool provides developers with more information about how third-party software development kits (SDKs) they use in their apps use data, helping them provide more accurate “privacy labels.”
Photo privacy upgrade
A new embedded photo selection feature that helps users share specific photos with the app while keeping the rest of the gallery private. When the app requests access to the user’s entire “Photos” library, the user will be shown more information about the content to be shared, and will be reminded occasionally for this setting.
Link Tracking Protection in Messages, Mail, and Safari Private Browsing
Some websites add extra parameters to URLs in an attempt to track users on other websites. These parameters will now be removed from links users share in Messages and Mail, but those links will still work as usual. These parameters will also be removed from the Safari “Private Browsing” link.
Safari private browsing update
Safari introduced private browsing a few years ago. This year, advanced tracking and fingerprinting protection goes a step further to help prevent websites from using the latest technology to track or identify a user’s device. The Private Browsing window also locks when not in use, allowing users to keep tabs open even when they are away from their device.
Make it easy for users to let friends and family know they have arrived at their destination safely. After the user activates, “Safety Notification” will automatically detect when the user arrives at the predetermined destination, and notify the selected contacts through “message”. If an unexpected situation occurs to the user on the way, “Safety Alert” will recognize that the user is not heading towards the claimed destination and contact them. If they don’t respond, the feature will share useful information with the user’s chosen contacts, such as the user’s precise location, battery level, cellular service status, and when the iPhone was last used.
New AirDrop experience
Users can hold each other’s iPhones together to share their contact information with designated recipients. Users can also choose which specific contact details they would like to share. Users can also share content such as photos or links in the same way. Apple Watch users can also use NameDrop.
Live Voicemail knows when to answer the phone
When someone calls and leaves a voice message, users will see a real-time verbatim transcript of what the caller said. If the user wants to speak to the caller, they can pick up the call at any time. When the “Mute Unknown Calls” feature is enabled, incoming calls from unknown numbers will go directly to Live Voicemail without ringing.
Messaging Safety is designed to warn children when receiving or sending nude photos in Messages, and now covers video content in addition to still images. A new API lets developers integrate “communication security” features directly into their apps. Additionally, the feature will now keep kids safe when sending and receiving AirDrop, FaceTime video messages, as well as when using the Phone app to receive Contact Posters and photo pickers to choose what to send.
Sensitive Content Warning
Sensitive content warnings help adult users avoid unwanted nudity and videos in Messages, AirDrop, FaceTime video messages, and when receiving Contact Posters in the Phone app, all using the ” The core privacy protection technology of “communication security”.
Password and Passkey Updates
In order to share passwords and passkeys more easily and securely, users can create a group to share a set of passwords. Everyone in the group can add and edit passwords to ensure that the passwords are kept up to date. Sharing is done through end-to-end encrypted iCloud Keyring.
The “closed mode” is extended to further protect people who may be targeted by spyware for hire because of their status or work. New protections include more secure default modes for wireless connections, media handling, media sharing default modes, sandboxing technology and network security optimizations to greatly reduce the risk of attacks for users who need additional protection.
These features will be available as a free software update this fall.