Apple criticized for embedding names, e-mails in songs

From C|Net:

…according to the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF). The consumer watchdog group, which focuses on the Web, claims Apple has left information belonging to customers of the new iTunes Plus service exposed. Music purchased from iTunes Plus is embedded with unencrypted customer names and e-mail addresses.

An Apple spokesman declined to comment.

Apple has for a long time included a customer’s name and e-mail address within song files purchased from iTunes. But the personal information was encrypted. On Wednesday, the company launched iTunes Plus, a service that features music without controversial copy-protection software.

In these songs, names and e-mail addresses were unencrypted, according to Fred von Lohmann, an EFF attorney. He pointed out that data could easily be compromised if an iPod is lost or stolen.

First off, it is nice to see the beginning of the mainstream move away from useless DRM. As for the name and email, if Apple sold umbrellas and engraved your name and email address on the handle, it would be seen as wonderful customer service and added value. 😉 This way, if you lose your new Norah Jones download, and later find a very similar looking AAC file hanging out on your hard drive, you can make sure it is yours.