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Last Updated: Thursday, 19 January 2006, 10:14 GMT
Apple addresses iTunes concerns
iTunes store and disk, BBC
The latest change to iTunes warns about the controversial feature
Apple has made changes to its iTunes music software in response to complaints that it abused user privacy.

The row blew up over a new iTunes feature that recommended other tracks users might like to buy.

An investigation by bloggers found that the recommendation system used unique identifiers for each user in a way that could compromise privacy.

The revised iTunes warns users about data being collected and lets them switch off the recommendation system.

Privacy problem

The iTunes MiniStore introduced in the 6.02 version of the music jukebox software was at the heart of privacy complaints.

This feature recommended tracks similar to the one a user was listening to, even if that track had not been bought via Apple's online music store.

The MiniStore was turned on by default in the upgrade of iTunes released on 10 January.

Bloggers became concerned when it became apparent that a user's Apple ID was helping to generate the recommendations.

They complained that Apple had not done enough to warn people about the information being passed back to it or what would be done with that data.

Apple issued a statement saying nothing was done with the data and has now changed the installation procedure so iTunes users get an early warning of what the MiniStore does.

The changes include a pop-up warning about MiniStore that gives users a chance at installation to turn off the feature so no recommendations are made and no data is passed back to Apple.

The change was welcomed by the bloggers who raised the alarm about iTunes. One of the whistle blowers, Kirk McElhearn, said Apple had "done the right thing".


SEE ALSO:
Snooping fears plague new iTunes
13 Jan 06 |  Technology
Apple enjoys ongoing iPod demand
18 Jan 06 |  Business
Christmas boost to download sales
09 Jan 06 |  Entertainment
Music marches to a digital beat
12 Jan 06 |  Technology
Music players lead digital surge
04 Jan 06 |  Technology


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