> E. Access to Your Account and Content
> We reserve the right to take steps we believe are reasonably necessary or appropriate to enforce and/or verify compliance with any part of this Agreement. You acknowledge and agree that we may, without liability to you, access, use, preserve and/or disclose your Account information and Content to law enforcement authorities, government officials, and/or a third party, as we believe is reasonably necessary or appropriate, if legally required to do so or if we have a good faith belief that such access, use, disclosure, or preservation is reasonably necessary to: (a) comply with legal process or request; (b) enforce this Agreement, including investigation of any potential violation thereof; (c) detect, prevent or otherwise address security, fraud or technical issues; or (d) protect the rights, property or safety of GCBD, its users, Apple, a third party, or the public as required or permitted by applicable law. You understand and agree that Apple and GCBD will have access to all data that you store on this service, including the right to share, exchange and disclose all user data, including Content, to and between each other under applicable law.
They sleep at night with the sad belief that because they hand it over to the Chinese and don't do it themselves it's all fine...
Apple can chose to operate in China and backdoor iCloud there or they can chose not to operate in China at all. It's hard for me to see how either choice will substantially affect people's liberties in China, it's not like apple products are in any way vital to the surveillance state.
On the other hand more and more companies retaliating (out of a desire to curry economic favor with China) against people who exercise their freedom of speech in non-authoritarian countries would seem to affect people's liberties to me.
Tim Cook defied the US goverment over the exact same issue, and even said:
"Compromising the security of our personal information can ultimately put our personal safety at risk. That is why encryption has become so important to all of us."
So to me, seeing him allow Chinese authorities access to that same data in China in the name of sales is incredibly hypocritical.
Apple is compromising the freedom of Chinese residents in China.
While I don't really support Apple's action it's easy to see why the first issue should be Blizzard's blame while the second issue is China's blame.
It's hard to see this account (jbang5) as anything but an internet troll who, if not literally on the payroll from the Chinese government, is still a useful idiot for their cause.
What I usually do, to counter this trolling tactic, is to provide them with the source that they were asking for, and then I call them an idiot for not being aware of such an obvious fact.
Because, by definition, they are uninformed about the matter, as they didn't know about the source and had to ask for it. So I just make fun of them for not knowing about it, and rub it in their face when I provide the information that they asked for and didn't know about.
If you have to ask for sources on the matter, you are by definition "ignorant" on the matter.
Based off of this web comic: http://wondermark.com/c/2014-09-19-1062sea.png
You could also look at some of the other links already posted to this thread in response to similar queries from you and others, like this one (https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=21207931) and this one (https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=21208376).
Tianhe-2 Supercomputer @ 33.86 petaflops (quadrillion flops)
=33 860 000 000 000 000 keys per second (33.86 quadrilion)
3.386e16 * 31556952 seconds in a year
2255 possible keys
2^255 / 1.0685184e24
=1.0685184e24 keys per year (~1 septillion, 1 yottaflop)
Needless to say, that's a long fucking time. Yes, cracking an access password would be much less time-consuming and so would finding and using non-brute force attack methods to guess or steal the key but for your basic claim that "Yes", China has cracked strong encryption, I just don't see where you get that idea from.
Chinese government nationalized the data centers six months later, gaining access to all the encryption keys and user iCloud data at rest. Apple complied:
They allow a Chinese company to manage iCloud data.
Although I think they have regretted that decision.
Google, on the other hand, walked away from China and it's business as usual for them.
This has also created a market for very cheap uncertified Android phones+ accompanying malware.
Google famously pulled out of China rather than censor, but that was just a PR move because they already were failing in China. I'd argue that censorship is an altogether different situation anyway.
Apple removing iCloud from China helps literally nobody. Chinese users don't have an alternative that isn't subject to the same Chinese laws. Any user that wishes to resort to less-than-legal alternatives can do so whether or not Apple provides iCloud services.
Ultimately this boils down to "should the Chinese court systems be able to decide when to hand data over to the Chinese government", because that's the effect of using a Chinese partner company to manage the iCloud data. For everyone else it's "should the US court systems be able to decide" instead, which honestly isn't all that much better.
Tim Cook even said: "Compromising the security of our personal information can ultimately put our personal safety at risk."
And yet, here he is in China compromising personal data, all to make a buck.