Apple removes Clearview AI iPhone app from App Store

Clearview AI suffered a massive data breach a few days ago and now the company has its app suspended by Apple.

Clearview AI suffered a massive data breach a few days ago and now the company has its app suspended by Apple.

Clearview AI is a creepy facial recognition startup that keeps making headlines for all the wrong reasons. Initially, the company raised privacy concerns after reports emerged that it uses facial recognition technology to snap anyone’s picture and instantly learn about their name, address and any other details available online – The data is then shared with law enforcement and other high profile customers.

What makes Clearview AI a major privacy threat is, the fact that, it currently holds photos and personal details of billions of users – All that without their knowledge or permission.

However, last week, Clearview AI suffered a massive data breach in which unknown hackers gained access to its entire client list among other data and ended up leaking it online. Now, Apple has punished the Clearview AI app for breaching its terms and services by booting it from the App Store.

Reportedly, the app was blocked for violating the terms and conditions of the Apple Developer Enterprise Program that allows apps to distribute within the company. Those violating this rule are punished by app suspension and in this case, according to Apple, Clearview AI was found violating that particular rule.

See: Meet IRpair & Phantom; powerful anti-facial recognition glasses

As of now, the company has two weeks to file a reconsideration report to Apple. According to Clearview AI’s CEO Hoan Ton-That, 

“We are in contact with Apple and working on complying with their terms and conditions.”

It is worth noting that Clearview AI’s iPhone app allowed customers to access its advanced facial recognition tool. Remember, the FBI and Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) are also Clearview AI’s customers.

See: Police locate suspect from a crowd of 60,000 using Facial Recognition

This, however, is not the first time when Apple has booted off an app for violating its Developer Enterprise Program. Previously, Google and Facebook also had their apps suspended from the App Store.

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