Although the Windows Insider Programme may have appeared to be a gesture of cooperation and willingness to collaborate with developers on a peer level, the permissions users grant by installing and using it point to an altogether different aim.
Windows 10: Permission to keylog
The document reveals that Windows 10 can collect and use data in a variety of astounding ways, sending it to Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) at any time without the user being aware.
“If you open a file, we may collect information about the file, the application used to open the file, and how long it takes any use [of] it for purposes such as improving performance, or [if you] enter text, we may collect typed characters, we may collect typed characters and use them for purposes such as improving autocomplete and spellcheck features,” it states.
Reams of data
Not content with logging keystrokes, the company says it may collect even more data. “Microsoft collects information about you, your devices, applications and networks, and your use of those devices, applications and networks,” the Windows 10 preview terms state. “Examples of data we collect include your name, email address, preferences and interests; browsing, search and file history; phone call and SMS data; device configuration and sensor data; and application usage.”
Technology companies continue to tread a fine line on the issue of privacy and data collection, and we may well see a public backlash to this latest attempt to mine user data.
On the issue of blindly accepting privacy policies, it was reported this week that a number of parents had agreed to give up their first born child in return for the use of a free WiFi hotspot. The provider said it was attempting to educate people on the importance of reading terms of service documents.