Apple Starts Storing Personal Information in Chinese Data Centres
Published on: 19th Aug 2014
Note -- this news article is more than a year old.
Apple has confirmed that it has started storing customer account information on Chinese servers, marking a break from other tech companies who refuse to host personal information in China.
Apple said that the data would only be for Chinese customers, and would be stored on computers being supplied by China Telecom.
"Apple takes user security and privacy very seriously," it said. "We have added China Telecom to our list of data centre providers to increase bandwidth and improve performance for our customers in mainland china. All data stored with our providers is encrypted. China Telecom does not have access to the content."
It's understood that the keys for encrypting the data are not being stored in China, making it harder for Chinese authorities to force Apple to unlock customer data if needed.
However, Chinese authorities could, in theory, still demand copies of the customer information, and work out how to decrypt it at a later date.
On the flipside, storing information locally substantially improves data processing speeds, as communications don't have to pass through Chinese firewalls which slow down access to data stored overseas.