Thu, May 05, 2011 - Page 11 News List

Apple, Sony ask Taipei City for deadline extension

Staff Writer, with CNA

Apple Inc and Sony Corp have asked for an extension of the deadline set by the Taipei City Government to explain two recent privacy breaches that have made headlines in international media.

Reports two weeks ago that Apple tracks the location of its iPhone users have sparked widespread consumer outrage.

At the same time, Sony is reeling from the hacking of its PlayStation Network. The company notified users and authorities last week that hackers might have stolen personal information, including credit card details, from more than 100 million of its users.

Chen Bi-chu (陳碧珠), chief consumer protection official with the city’s Law and Regulation Commission, said yesterday the commission has asked the two companies to submit a written request for the deadline extension, which could give them a further five to 10 days.

The current deadline for Apple is tomorrow, while Sony has until next week to explain itself, she said.

According to the law, the two companies are required to submit an explanation 10 days after receiving a letter of administrative investigation from the city government, or otherwise face a fine of between NT$30,000 (US$1,045) and NT$300,000.

Responding to recent questions over a possible infringement of privacy and security, Apple said in a statement on Wednesday last week that it “is not tracking the location” of users’ iPhone devices.

“Apple has never done so and has no plans to ever do so,” the statement said.

Sony executives have publicly apologized for its security breach.

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