It’s emerged that by default, Safari shares some user IP addresses with Chinese conglomerate Tencent. To be entirely fair to Apple, it’s done as part of the Fraudulent Website Warning setting which protects against phishing scams, in the same way it does with Google Safe Browsing. But that might not be of much comfort to Chinese citizens. Tencent is, after all, a company that’s so buddy-buddy with the ruling Communist party that it literally made a game where you applaud a Xi Jinping speech.
Has Apple been transparent about this? Well, it depends on your definition of transparent. If you’re the kind of person that digs deep into iPhone settings and then feels obliged to click the “About Safari & Privacy” link then you will see the following line in the text: “Before visiting a website, Safari may send information calculated from the website address to Google Safe Browsing and Tencent Safe Browsing to check if the website is fraudulent. These safe browsing providers may also log your IP address.”
More via Twitter » Matthew Green
Apple’s response » We’re not handing over Safari URLs to Tencent – just people’s IP addresses