Apple reneges on Black Hat security talk
Marketing drones demand Jobsian secrecy
Black Hat Apple's politburo has put the kibosh on a presentation scheduled for the Black Hat security conference that was to give an inside look at the ultra-secretive company's security response team.
Black Hat officials had already given the Apple team the go-ahead when people inside Apple's marketing department vetoed the talk, which would have been the first time Apple has discussed its security practices. "Marketing got wind of it, and nobody at Apple is ever allowed to speak publicly about anything without marketing approval," a Black Hat organizer told IDG News.
Apple's policy of saying next to nothing about how it goes about protecting its users from escalating threats is, to say the least, unfortunate. Just last week, the company said it had patched its software from a serious flaw in the net's address lookup system. Three days after two separate researchers warned Mac clients are still vulnerable to the flaw, Apple hasn't uttered a word, an omission that generates confusion and doubt in those who depend on the vendor. Apple's tight-lipped policy contrasts sharply with practices at other companies such as Microsoft.
It isn't the first Apple talk to be pulled from consideration at Black Hat. Security researcher Charles Edge pulled his talk about a previously undisclosed weakness in Apple's File Vault encryption system out of concerns it might run afoul of confidentiality agreements he signed with Apple. A Black Hat representative said Edge had submitted a proposal to speak on the topic, but that it was pulled before officials ever accepted it. ®
Shouldn't this be under security rather than hardware?
It's not just security...
... a few months back all the apple devs mysteriously vanished overnight from all participation in public GCC development and the related mailing lists. This may or may not have been a marketing dictat, it could be their legal department insisting they don't risk 'contaminating' their clean minds with any GPLv3-related thoughts, but between them the two stories paint an image of Apple retreating into its bunker and cutting off from all contact with the outside world.
See the thread "Darwin long double issue (PR25477): any news or plans?" at
BTW, there's a story on CNET.com today (yeh, ok, well it aint quite as bad as citing wikipedia...) denying that the talk ever had the go-ahead. Time for an update?
BTW2, why is this in the "Hardware" category rather than "Security"? It took me *ages* to (re-)find this story to comment on - I thought maybe Apple had got to you and made you pull it!
All bow down to the mighty power of Marketing!
And you thought we were just a bunch of blond girls that produced colourful ppt presentaitons! Muuuhhahhahhahaahaha
Of course Apple is run by marketing, you don't honestly think that techies would focus on sexy looking design and all of those sleek white curves at the expense of performance do you? That big apple logo is right up there on the lid for a reason you know.
If it was left up to the techies you'd have a device with enough GHz and Ram to roast a heard of oxen just by it's mere presence, but it'd be ugly as sin!
In my experience you can't let techies out - they'll go and tell everyone what is technically possible, then we marketing people have to go and explain why we chose not to offer it even though it is technically possible. You know - because it wouldn't fit inside the sleek case, or we're planning on charging for that in a later upgrade etc.