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Comments

While checking out the internal USA websites I came across one with the latest Amazon news -dated today Amazon announce (in America ) that their Alexa is going to be fitted into light switches/thermostats and small electrical appliances without the need to pair them .
The new AVS -Alexa Voice Service integration for AWS IoT Core reduces memory requirements to 1MB of RAM to stop you worrying about privacy a small blue LED will be fitted to let you know and if you like your life to be truly open to the public Amazon Rekognition (TM) software is being introduced in the USA allowing facial recognition to take place to much US outcry , the ACLU has filed a lawsuit against the Dept. of Justice and FBI naming Amazon and Microsoft as they (secretly ) agreed to hand over data to both of them that includes “voice recognition” of which both have millions of records already of US citizens .
So I am “Mr. no mike -no camera Lucas and no MS either .

“Hot off the presses ” — might interest Which .
Dear duncan,

This is progress. The Scottish government is hashing out plans to introduce a new ‘tourist tax’ that could apply to short-term holiday lets. [1] If it’s done right, it would be a huge step forward in the fight to stop holiday lets from tearing our communities apart, forcing families out, and driving rent prices further through the roof. [2]

Right now, the government is asking for public input on how a tourist tax could work in Scotland. [3] But you can bet that corporate lobbyists from companies like Airbnb will be working round the clock to make sure any new taxes don’t hit their profits – even if that means the new rules don’t protect the people who need them. [4]

So I “sent a message” to Holyrood .
Holiday homes wont mean much to urban dwellers but living in a nice coastal village attracts big money buyers who buy up old cottages -renovate them and when that dried up just outbid local young people for “move in ” old houses in all the villages round me .
Result ? many empty homes in the winter and big loss of income to local traders resulting in many closures. One village 5 miles west of me looks like a wild-west ghost town in winter .

But if that’s done wrong you’d risk losing the tourist trade.

I think the same problem afflicts many desirable places. It’s certainly an issue in Snowdonia.

Many countries around the world implement a Tourist Tax; France and the US, just to mention two, but the tax is collected by the hotels and lets, then passed on to the authorities.

Certainly in France and Florida, the tax payable is posted on the inside of the hotel room doors, so it’s seen as part of the cost of the stay. If it were to be implemented here, it would have to be across the board – no exemptions.

Bought one of the new “super dooper ” iPhone 11 Pro,s etc ? –if so turning off the location finder /all apps/system services –doesn’t work so your location will always be known .
Apple,s response ? its -quote- “by design ” .

Duncan: quoting snippets from third party reports without offering context is neither helpful nor informative. It’s scaremongering, and not appropriate in here.

FWIW, it’s not entirely certain that what you suggest is actually happening, as Apple has not yet responded to requests for further information nor is it entirely certain from what has been seen thus far that the apps are actually using location data.

And this topic is merely for Which? to report and discuss their latest information releases – not for individuals to submit their own, perhaps poorly reported, snippets.

We are invited to post news in The Newsroom, but common sense suggests that links to reliable sources of information are included – not gossip or old news.

Whats all this “scaremongering ” Ian so real honest no fake news facts are scaremongering ?? –sounds like political talk to me –shut up Lucas .
Of course Apple have not responded in the national media but they responded to a certain US software engineer who forced the issue with Apple don’t you know by now I have a large number of technical contacts in the USA .
Okay Ian I am told no high tech stuff but just for you do you want me to post the engineering details ?–do you think well known worldwide software engineers with a good reputation are going to email me from their own website online and provide rubbish ?

Hi all. Few things:

– Please do include links where you can in here
– Here is the background to this one: https://appleinsider.com/articles/19/12/04/iphone-11-pro-found-to-collect-location-data-against-user-settings
– I’ve asked @katebevan about it – she said that even if you do have location services off (so a phone isn’t using your location for apps), a phone will check in with mobile masts and wifi networks – so it would know where you are
– Finally – once again, please consider the tone of responses to each other, even when you don’t agree.

Thank you.

Thank you George I don’t mind being criticised if I am wrong but people should stop assuming,especially after many years here that I get all my info off a search engine , I just cant for the life of me understand if I provide something from a kosher source (software engineer ) its taken as “online rubbish “.
Fact -I get at least 30 emails a day over one third are technical and the rest political (of ALL shades ), news from America from many people, various rights groups including Eco groups three major online petition groups (one American ) , several right wing groups in the USA – three left wing groups -UK/USA – one US religious group -no not Christian or Muslim but several Muslim rights groups , many US.org groups on USA human rights and at the moment blocking at least 30 democratic candidates helpers and press offices bots .

Where do you get the time, Duncan?

The background page is what I used: it states categorically

“A report on Tuesday suggests Apple’s iPhone 11 Pro, and potentially iPhone 11 models, continuously collect and transmit location data when user-selectable location services settings are disabled,”

Note the use of “Suggests” and “potentially”. What I am saying is that I believe it’s wrong to post statements as absolutes when there is still doubt.

Kate is, of course, correct; all mobiles continually check the location of the nearest masts and will do so, until the battery is removed. But this is widely known. What matters is whether this routine and common checking presents any sort of risk.

Ian you do understand that Apple tells it customers that “switching off all locations finding apps /programmes etc allows you to “opt-out” of being tracked “.
Would you not admit that’s a lie ? otherwise why provide those facilities in the first place unless to deceive?
In criticism of me its said I post tech stuff that’s “over the head ” of the public ( NOT my impression by the way ) I don’t patronise people, yet what do you think of a normal member of the non tech public being deceived in this way –don’t they Deserve to be told the truth rather than lied to by emission ?

DerekP says:
4 December 2019

Duncan, I think what Apple tells its customers actually includes this policy:-https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT207056

This includes:

“If Location Services is on, your iPhone will periodically send the geo-tagged locations of nearby Wi-Fi hotspots and cell towers (where supported by a device) in an anonymous and encrypted form to Apple, to be used for augmenting this crowd-sourced database of Wi-Fi hotspot and cell tower locations.”

and:

“You can disable Location Services at any time. To do so, go to Settings > Privacy > Location Services, and either turn off the global Location Services switch or turn off the individual location switch of each location-aware app…”

So the “big reveal” in this storey is simply that only the first method works in the above cited text. But then the first method is obviously the easiest and most obvious method for turning off all tracking anyway.

Wish it were true Derek –BUT all services are not turned off , by a consensus here you don’t want me to be technical yet you insist that that is the correct – a top politician couldn’t have done better or should I say “marketing ?
The only way to prove my point is to BE technical (well at least a bit ) , well Derek I am a straight forward guy and hate me for it here is the water-downed – less technical (in my view ) explanation –
The policy explains users can disable all location services entirely with one swipe (by navigating to Settings > Privacy > Location Services, then switching “Location Services” to “off”). When one does this, the location services indicator — a small diagonal upward arrow to the left of the battery icon — no longer appears unless Location Services is re-enabled.

The policy continues: “You can also disable location-based system services by tapping on System Services and turning off each location-based system service.” But apparently there are some system services on this model (and possibly other iPhone 11 models) which request location data and cannot be disabled by users without completely turning off location services, as the arrow icon still appears periodically even after individually disabling all system services that use location.

On Nov. 13, xxxxxxxx contacted Apple to report this as a possible privacy bug in the new iPhone Pro and/or in iOS 13.x, sharing a video showing how the device still seeks the user’s location when each app and system service is set to “never” request location information (but with the main Location Data service still turned on).

The video above was recorded on a brand new iPhone 11 Pro. The behavior appears to persist in the latest iPhone operating system (iOS 13.2.3) on iPhone 11 Pro devices. A review of Apple’s support forum indicates other users are experiencing the same issue. I was not able replicate this behavior on an older model iPhone 8 with the latest iOS.

This week Apple responded that the company does not see any concerns here and that the iPhone was performing as designed.

“We do not see any actual security implications,” an Apple engineer wrote in a response to xxxxxxx “It is expected behavior that the Location Services icon appears in the status bar when Location Services is enabled. The icon appears for system services that do not have a switch in Settings” [emphasis added].

Apple has not yet responded to follow-up questions, but it seems they are saying their phones have some system services that query your location regardless of whether one has disabled this setting individually for all apps and iOS system services.

By the way in the light of this news – Facebook is issuing a warning to users (in the USA ) about turning off “Significant Locations” etc –

Facebook, however, isn’t having it. The world’s largest social network really doesn’t want you to turn off your location tracking. In fact, the company actually published a blog post on Monday, warning users that turning off location tracking would result in a worse overall Facebook experience. The post actually tries to make the case that protecting your privacy is bad for you.

And it would seem the reason Facebook is bringing this up now is that a lot of users are likely to be very surprised when they start getting notifications on their iPhone telling them when and how its app is using their location information.

I reached out to Facebook but did not immediately receive a response.

DerekP says:
4 December 2019

Duncan, I hope you are not accusing me of posting fake facts by citing Apple’s terms and conditions with a link to their website.

I did also watch the YouTube video that you have just referred to, before I posted my link to Apple’s privacy policy. I bet you haven’t watched it though, have you?

As far as I can see, far from being based on “consensus” this current storm-in-a teacup just links back to a single post on apple insider.

As Ian has already said, I do not think you are providing any value here by selectively quoting (but without acknowledgement) from the various news sites that have “retweeted” the apple insider story.

Also as Ian said “What matters is whether this routine and common checking presents any sort of risk” to UK consumers.

[Sent from my HP Laptop with eMMC SSD]

Regarding Location Services, the iPhone 11 discussed does not seem very different from my olde one. Mine is enabled, which allows me to find information about local weather, show me my location on maps, reveal the food hygiene rating of nearby eating establishments and provide a short list of local pubs that might be worth considering when I’m on holiday, etc, etc. I might even be able to find my phone from my laptop should we be parted. I guess that most smartphone users make use of local information.

Maybe it’s worth moving on to more newsworthy stories.

I referred to a you tube video Derek ?? mind pointing out which post I posted that on considering for the third time here I will repeat —-I do not have access to Any of the social, media giants people think so much of.
Not only have I removed and blocked in their programming any programming related to running videos of any description I have run through my entire arch programming and checked and removed ANY apps relating to all three as well as Google- MS -Wine etc etc etc .
I have blocked all their ports including Yahoo so I cannot see or enter any of the big social media as I get a blank page now on my browser.
So no Windows “phone homes ” .
You are downplaying what is a big controversy in the States as though its – UK public its okay just carry on getting tracked .
What I posted is reality not conjecture or a political fake news speech yet you dismiss it ?- I think of telling the public not the casual British – don’t tell the public stance just redact it no Derek I don’t have a “stiff upper-lip ” when it comes to public safety. .
If you don’t believe software engineers -well that,s your problem— I do I repeat software engineer contacted Apple directly NOTHING to do with tweets-Facebook – YouTube et al and got a reply from their engineering dept —NOT an Apple equivalent of a Microsoft MVP which you are implying .

“Mostly harmless” is how I see this latest Apple news, so “Don’t Panic!” should be the message to iPhone 11 users.

That is based on my judgements, as one who has watched the video in question (it was published on YouTube and linked to from the various blog posts) and who has hands-on experience of owning and using recent model iPhones (but not yet 11’s). I’m happy to let others deal with mulling over the mechanics of safety pins.

Indeed. And it really isn’t “a big controversy in the States”, Duncan. It’s rather like Trip Advisor, really; those who intensely dislike Apple take enormous pleasure in digging up the tiniest detail with which they can berate and belabour Apple, and attempt to blow things out of all proportion. They count on the more easily duped or possibly tribal to re-post and re-tweet these minor issues to make it appear as though it’s major news.

As a side note, we – as a family – always have location services switched on because every so often we want to know where another member of the group is. It’s proven invaluable in the past, only this last week, in fact, so I don’t see any harm in what’s been reported.

I agree with Derek, and don’t see any risk that the Strangulous Stilettans of Jajazikstak will invade based on this non-story.

Is Apple “beyond reproach ” Ian , is it “hallowed ground ” ?
I do realise that Apple has many faithful to the end stalwarts , I actually don’t have a problem with that but when other”minor ” items are brought up on Which there isn’t the same rush to condemn , obviously not the same faithful following .

No, Duncan; of course it isn’t, but searching out the tiniest issue which, in practical terms, may have no adverse effects whatsoever, and attempting to inflate this into a major news story is not doing this site any good at all.

There are more immediate concerns for Apple users, such as the rather wobbly version of Catalina, which pose far more problems than a single snippet from Apple Insider.

Don’t you think this discussion has run its course?

About ten postings ago, Malcolm:-)

Just to clarify – everyone is welcome to post consumer news here in the newsroom but please do keep it relevant and link to mainstream and reputable news sources.

I must admit that I don’t see some of the extremely detailed technical issues that get raised here as being within the category of Consumer News or relevant to UK consumer experience.

Me too!

… and you’re in a better position to judge, Derek, because you engage in one-to-one contacts with real members of the public trying to get the best out of their devices. I reckon most users’ interests are quite simple and just want to function satisfactorily without too much complication.

I read in the press, recently, that garden vacuum/blowers are the latest bad things to own. The petrol one pollute and the electric ones destroy bugs and insects along with the leaves. Blown, the ecosystem is destroyed, sucked, they are vortexed away. My Flymo has not been very effective. The plastic blades inside break quickly and are expensive to replace. The holding bag is flimsy and has torn. The suction was just about sufficient but could have been better. It blew well though. The result is one blower left in the garage to decay. I

Electric ones are very good at cleaning fluff out of tumble dryer filters though to minimise fire risks.

A useful suggestion, Roger.

I am planning to use my leaf blower to blow fluff out of the hoses connecting my bathroom extractor fans to the outside world without having to grovel around in the loft.

Black Friday brings UK retailers ‘welcome’ boost: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-50644138

That sounds good, but from this article: “More than 300 clothing brands in the UK asked shoppers not to buy anything for environmental reasons, and climate protesters also targeted a Brighton shopping centre.”

I wonder what can be done to run retail businesses without damaging the environment.

And while its talk of “Black Friday ” and snooping -don’t buy –
SMA-WATCH -M2 by Chinese firm Shenzhen Smart Care Technology its got a GPS tracker that’s very vulnerable in terms of data and location –

Researchers at the IoT laboratory from the AV-TEST Institute revealed that the data of as much as 5000 children globally is at stake on the firm’s unencrypted servers which includes names, addresses, age, images and voice messages of these children.

In addition to the data being unencrypted, it can also be accessed unauthorizedly leaving little to do for someone looking to misuse such data.

The rest is technical and none of you want that but Germany has banned them and all others and wants parents to destroy them.

An email from Which? today links to this:
https://www.which.co.uk/news/2019/12/election-2019-compare-money-policies-from-conservatives-labour-liberal-democrats-snp/?utm_medium=Email&utm_source=ExactTarget&utm_campaign=3913618-C_EN_EM_041219

The manifestos are essentially political documents, in many cases bribes, proposals that will not be kept or are unaffordable, doubtfully costed.

I’d suggest this is an area Which? should not become involved in or give credibility to. Keep away from politics.

I wonder what compensation we can claim if whichever party is elected fails to deliver on its promises.

I agree that it would be good to avoid discussion of politics, Malcolm, and I’m surprised that we are not discouraged from discussing politics, religion and socks.

It is the publishing of manifestos by Which? that bothers me, but even if some did consider that to be acceptable it should surely be accompanied by warnings as to their credibility.

We will, of course, have the opportunity in 5 years time to vote out the party that was elected and failed to deliver, and vote in another party giving them the same opportunity not to deliver.

As for compensation, providing large amounts could be part of the manifestos, as money seemingly is being spirited out of thin air.

I wonder what would happen if politicians in one party began telling the truth? I just might vote for them, but I suspect must people like to live under an illusion.

I miss the connection with socks, but since you brought it up how many people are happy to wear odd socks? I’ve quite a few that have lost their partners and see no reason not to make use of them.

I thought this magic money forest gave a good indication of where the money was coming from:

Nice cartoon – thanks alfa 🙂

Brightens the day every time.

comp says:
5 December 2019

An antivirus app has been removed from Firefox browser

https://hexus.net/tech/news/software/137429-mozilla-firefox-avast-extensions-removed-add-ons-store/

for collecting user data

I am not a fan of Avast nor AVG both of which are “condemned ” by FF but its standard practice for FF to stick up a box telling you that —this extension gathers your info website visits etc etc –no big surprise as that’s how those types of “protection ” protect you .
All FF wants you to do is rely on —-Google Safety which is under the cover in “about :config which has already been proved by many tech groups to track you round the web as it “protects you ” , no I removed Google programming and rely on apps approved by Git Hub rather than the worlds biggest snooper “protecting ” me.

FF has actually removed some pretty good apps because they track snoopers and third parties under the guise of—these are “old apps ” and haven’t been updated by the software engineer that’s why I use Waterfox to surf the web not FF although my apps work on both . Thunderbird (part of the Mozilla organisation ) has blocked some great tracking apps that are used to really find out who is sending you those scam emails under the same excuse forcing you to use other methods.
I recommend malwarebytes browser guard in place of those other virus protectors as its proved very long term to be reliable and safe and yes –it works . Be aware its only for the browser not your computer system .

I believe this could be the first time Which? has published anything of this importance. This link to the economic promises from the main parties is, I would argue, very much at the heart of consumer matters and of vital importance to consumers throughout the UK.

I’ve long believed that Which? ought to become involved in dealing with the realities of the economy in general and in how the various parliamentary groups propose to use our money. This sort of move is long overdue, and the value of it being published cannot be overestimated.

Well done, Which?.

These manifestos are far from being “the realities of the economy”“. I expect Which? to report critically on all matters, including financial, not simply reproduce the marketing material that is issued. It should (and normally does) keep out of politics.

I can’t agree, Malcolm; these facts and figures are what the main parties are proposing will be done should any of them gain power. We have a right to see this – not in a party manifesto, where it’s often very tricky to separate out fact from fiction – but from a trusted and independent source, such as Which?.

I also feel that Which? readers are well aware what these figures represent but what Which? has done is to present them in a comparative format, something which I don’t believe has been done anywhere else.

And Which? is not entering the political arena with this; it is fulfilling its obligation to educate the UK consumer. Politics – and political promises – are at the heart of consumerism and we need to be kept abreast of what’s being promised.

What happens in a few days time will affect every single member of the country, and not just those who vote. In a world where social media increasingly dominates the agenda this sort of information – provided independently, without bias or endorsement – is exactly what Which? should be doing.

Never has there been a time when the independence and trustworthiness of Which? been more sorely needed, so I believe that not only is this the right move but an essential step for the Consumer Champion to take.

These are figures and promises but not facts. I doubt Which? has the resources to see whether any of the promises are realistic. Simply reporting claims without substantiation continues the political practice of misleading the consumer.

Presenting the claims in a “comparative format” is only useful if those claims, taken together, have validity. If such a comparison is meant to allow us to choose the party that best meets our needs then the promises need to be shown to be achievable and guaranteed. These are not, so I see little purpose in republishing speculative marketing material.

will be done“? As we have seen from previous manifestos, many promises have limited likelihood of seeing the light of day.

Better if Which? simply said, “buyer beware”.

I have obviously “just woken up ” to your link Ian and I have to agree with you as regards Which taking an interest in politics , if you didn’t know although not obvious the big social media websites are “manipulating ” users choices but that is nothing compared to MS & Google who have banned any negative views on America and its overseas policies MS has a special app that gives you approved opinions on America .
No ,to me Which IS making a brave step in line with what you say Ian and its a d*m sight more even handed than most in the USA and here .-
https://www.theguardian.com/media/2019/jan/23/dont-trust-daily-mail-website-microsoft-browser-warns-users
Political ?– of course it is .

Hi all. Which? covering manifestos is nothing new. We covered each in the same way in 2017, and covered what a hung parliament may mean for finances as well: https://www.which.co.uk/news/2017/06/hung-parliament-what-does-this-mean-for-your-finances/

There was even an article on how a general election may affect your pensions and ISAs: https://www.which.co.uk/news/2017/04/how-will-the-general-election-affect-my-pensions-and-isa/

malcolm r says: Today 10:30

These are figures and promises but not facts. I doubt Which? has the resources to see whether any of the promises are realistic. Simply reporting claims without substantiation continues the political practice of misleading the consumer.

No, because everyone knows these are not firm facts but promises and Which?’s obligation is to keep the consumer fully informed as to what the parties are promising, if only as an indication as to whether they can – eventually – be trusted.

Presenting the claims in a “comparative format” is only useful if those claims, taken together, have validity

I can’t agree. The consumer has a right to be able to view the promises in a format which allows for easy and simple comparisons. We do not know – at this stage – how many of these will be enacted but Which?’s responsibility is to keep us informed – every step of the way – as to what is being promised. Do you feel it’s better if the consumer is unable to see this information?

“everyone knows these are not firm facts” but earlier ” these facts and figures are what the main parties are proposing “. Best if Which? report real facts, or critically examine promises. I think alfa’s cartoon sums it up. Fortunatley it will all be over in a week.

You’re presenting the argument as a simple binary choice, whereas in reality it’s far from simple, as most know. There is no contradiction between the public’s awareness of the unreliability of promises and the need, nonetheless, to have those promises presented in tabular form so a swift and easy comparison can be made.

We must agree to differ strongly on this; I believe it’s not only outstanding of Which? to publish the promises, although I would not differ with you on the need to have those same promises dissected critically, but it’s actually an essential aspect of the Consumer Association’s original constitution.

Which has to inform; it’s why it was set up and it’s pivotal to their main role today. By publishing a simple table of the main party promises it allows for easy comparison. Do you feel it’s better for the public not to see this information?

It’s encouraging that it is becoming increasingly to question whether the claims made in political manifestos will ever be realised. The advertising of products has to be legal, decent, honest and truthful, though this is often pushed to the limits, in my opinion. Maybe there is a case for vetting the claims of political parties.

Just how intelligent are those who plan party campaigns when they do this, and expect not to be rumbled?:
“Jo Swinson has defended her party for sending campaign leaflets disguised as local newspapers, as a leading group of editors vowed to expose parties for trying to “take the public for mugs” by tricking them.

The Liberal Democrats sent voters in marginal seats mocked-up local newspapers, such as the “Wantage Constituency Observer”, “Romsey and Southampton Gazette” and “North West Leeds and Wharfedale News”.

The worry is, in an indecisive election, such people could hold the balance of power.

malcolm r says: Just how intelligent are those who plan party campaigns when they do this, and expect not to be rumbled?

There’s increasing evidence that by fabricating stories (lying) and promising everything to everyone the electorate is positively influenced – or, at least – a large part of it.

Lying has, in fact, become the currency of the current political climate. There’s no other way to explain how Trump reached the White House. And the Tories fabricating snippets to distort the truth on Facebook and Instagram brought the fabricated snippets to a much wider audience than would otherwise have been the case.

We might argue ‘you can’t believe anything a politician says’ but it seems millions do. Which is exactly why we need Which? to become prominent in exposing falsehoods and disingenuousness. The sudden rebranding of CCHQ’s Twitter feed as a fact-checking service, at the start of the debate between Boris Johnson and Jeremy Corbyn, was no simple one-off stunt. It was merely the first step-change in a Conservative election campaign designed around organised lying.

It seems crime does pay.

https://www.newstatesman.com/politics/uk/2019/11/tories-disinformation-campaign-will-only-get-worse-we-must-learn-how-fight-it

I think some of the immature political apparatchiks inside the party machinery get carried away with enthusiasm and think they are so smart they can treat the electorate like fools. I hope the polls punish them, but would lessons be learned?

Well after all the criticism I have received over commenting on Apple phones sending back location data in which I stuck to my guns I have just 10 minutes ago received an email from the software engineer confirming that the intermittent leak of location has been traced by APPLE -yes Apple and is quote- tied to the inclusion of a new short range technology that lets iPhone users SHARE files locally with other nearby phones that support this feature and that a FUTURE version of its mobile operating system will allow users to disable it-end quote ,

I take it now that Apple has admitted it and that the software engineer was quite correct in bringing to the attention of Apple somebody will say— yes you were right Duncan ?? — but probably not.

For those who still refuse to believe –yes I can now supply the tech detail but I said I would hold back on that didn’t I as it was “beyond ” what’s needed here .?

Duncan: I’m glad you know the engineer personally, but the original issue was not about believing you. The issue is whether this has a detrimental effect on the user and whether, in fact. it actually matters all that much to the ordinary user. Apple remains probably the most secure OS and mobile system around, and I seriously doubt that the issue you describe is going to bring the world to an end anytime soon. There are far more things with which we need to be concerned.

The detail about the story is here and, as can be seen, they are “doing nothing actually in any way harmful, by their own status indicator light showing status in nitpickingly honest detail” on the iPhone itself.

In fact, the only issue was the length of time it took Apple to respond. I wonder if it’s worth examining the length of time it takes Facebook to respond – honestly – to queries, or the length of time it takes Google to admit to stealing personal data.

As I’ve said, certain people delight in finding the slightest and – in this case – utterly innocuous issue with Apple and seem to happily ignore the huge failings of Android, Google, Facebook, Instagram and Whatsapp – to mention but a few. Odd, really…

Ian, I agree it is silly to present this as a threat to consumers. Thanks also for the link.

Another great British company and institution on the way out –or not ?
Its Kenya branch sold to America (HID corp) and losing the passport contract to France –
https://www.theguardian.com/business/2019/nov/26/de-la-rue-warns-there-is-significant-doubt-about-its-future
Why do I mention this company ? because I knew it from an early age as a stamp collector mainly of British stamps, world renowned top end security printing company.
Sad to see this happen , not much left of British based and owned companies so much for all the patriotic rhetoric about “looking after ourselves “–“being independent ” etc etc emanating out of the mouths of politicians .
If a great institution like this is allowed to fall then what’s left of “Britishness ” ?

It might have been a great company once but seems to have been badly run of late. Maybe if they had not had to compete with foreign providers, under EU tendering rules, they would have retained the UK passport contract.

Should we support failing companies – that exist (rightly) to make profits for their shareholders? Or perhaps we should take them into public ownership if we feel they are too valuable a resource to lose.

Manufacturing industry still has a substantial role in the UK economy, contributing 21% to GDP. Not enough though. Hopefully we will be spurred into action to produce more of what we need and be a little less reliant on our neighbours; manufacturing decent goods is well within our capabilities providing we provide the right climate for people to invest. It would not only reduce our import bill but increase our exports.

A postmistress has won a court case against the Post Office, after she was wrongly convicted of false accounting and lost her shop

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-50741916

Other postmasters have gone to jail for the same thing