EUROPEAN UNION REPRESENTATIVES have expressed continued concern about privacy in Microsoft's flagship Windows 10 operating system.
An Article 29 Working Party has questioned a number of issues with the OS, above and beyond those addressed by the adding features such as the privacy dashboard, which Microsoft introduced after threatened law suits from Switzerland and ultimatums from France.
Concerns, apart from what it calls a 'lack of transparency', include the lack of control over data that is collected and the default settings that for the layman can seem quite daunting, in a society where we want something that ‘just works'.
Reuters reports that the group wants Microsoft to explain how it was processing personal data, particularly for advertising.
"In light of the above, which are separate to the results of ongoing inquiries at a national level, even considering the proposed changes to Windows 10, the Working Party remains concerned about the level of protection of users' personal data,"
It says that Microsoft has indicated willingness to cooperate.
"Microsoft should clearly explain what kinds of personal data are processed for what purposes. Without such information, consent cannot be informed, and therefore, not valid."
As ever with the debate over privacy, it will bring up the argument that they're all just as bad as each other and that the only solution is to get a Linux machine and live in a ditch. However, running away from the problem isn't going to solve it and most people can't completely escape Microsoft (or Google, or Apple) on a day-to-day basis.
As such, it is vital that the players who handle our data that allows services like Alexa or Cortana or yes, dammit, Excel to work, are held to account, and that users are given full transparency on the technology that we are all now conditioned to depend on.
Microsoft is yet to comment on the matter. The latest version of Windows 10, known as the "Creators Update" (which, now we think about it, makes it sound a bit god-bothery) is out in April. µ
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