Pretty Complex

Pretty Complex

Article from Issue 218/2019

Modern cyberwarfare and its resulting monetary allocations have significantly impacted the exploit market, but where does that lead?

In October 2018, at a European Union data privacy conference, Apple CEO Tim Cook attacked competitors, Facebook and Google. According to Cook, Facebook and Google's business models had become a "surveillance industry" and likened their services (unlike Apple's devices) to a "data industrial complex" [1].

Analysts quickly agreed that Cook's underlying intention might have been to spin better public relations for Apple after several unfriendly articles about Apple's tax-evasion strategies. However, Cook's comments provoked more than the expected rebukes from Google and Facebook – it drew the attention of people who have been following American politics and military strategies since WWII.

Many were reminded of US President Dwight D. Eisenhower's legendary farewell adress in 1961. The former five-star general and commander of Allied forces in Europe warned the American public about the risks and dangers the "military-industrial complex" (installed during and after WWII) posed for the free and democratic Western world. Even though Eisenhower wrote his speech in a time when tanks and oil dominated warfare, some of his words remain as powerful today as they were during the cold war [2].


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