Last week reports emerged that Alex Kibkalo (a Lebanese, former Microsoft employee) was arrested for selling the Windows 8 source code. But the real concern is how Microsoft gathered the evidence against him; they read his personal emails without any form of court order.
So the question we were left asking was this: Does Apple have the same Big Brother abilities?
The simple answer is this: of course they do.
As detailed in Tech Fortune, here is an excerpt of their iCloud agreement (which very few of us read):
You acknowledge and agree that Apple may, without liability to you, access, use, preserve and/or disclose your Account information and Content to law enforcement authorities, government officials, and/or a third party, as Apple believes is reasonably necessary or appropriate, if legally required to do so or if we have a good faith belief that such access, use, disclosure, or preservation is reasonably necessary to: (a) comply with legal process or request; (b) enforce this Agreement, including investigation of any potential violation thereof; (c) detect, prevent or otherwise address security, fraud or technical issues; or (d) protect the rights, property or safety of Apple, its users, a third party, or the public as required or permitted by law.
From previous cases, we can see that Apple is big on protecting user privacy. But that doesn’t mean that they will protect your data from their own company. And if in doubt, Apple has deliberately included this clause, so to be on the safe side, keep all sensitive information away from iCloud.