Certificate Wars: A Quick Rundown of Apple's Dustup with Facebook and Google

Adjust Comment Print

The brief ban is said to have been disruptive for both Facebook and Google, disabling internal apps used by employees and preventing builds of internal apps that all relied on the now-revoked signing certificates. "We are in the process of getting our internal apps up and running". The company noted that the issue had no impact on its consumer services.

As Ars reported earlier Thursday, the Developer Enterprise Program allows for iOS apps that remain off the App Store but are locally distributed only.

Apple has apparently revoked certificates for Google's internal iOS apps (not its consumer apps).

Facebook spokesman Andy Stone did not immediately respond to other questions. Then it was discovered that Google was doing much the same thing as Facebook, and Apple revoked Google's certificates as well.

According to a source from The Verge, the initial versions of Google Maps, Hangouts, Gmail and other beta applications (not yet released) have stopped working today, as have other internal applications for employees, such as a Gbus application for transport and Google's internal application for its coffee shops.

Christie's Memoir: Heavy on Kushner Criticism, Light on Gubernatorial Record
If you're convicting murderers, it's one thing. " Once you've got this in your blood, it's hard to get rid of ", Christie said. But as Colbert covered last week , that was put on hold during the government shutdown. "He didn't have a plan", said Christie.

However, the Cupertino giant has now restored Facebook's enterprise certificate.

That discovery of Facebook's methodology to all of this led Apple to pull the certificate for Facebook's internal apps based on the same certificate. It's still available for Android users, but not in the Google Play store, for a similar reason: Google says the access gained by the app violates the company's privacy policy. Well, almost all except apps used by developers building apps used internally by enterprise employees.

In a statement to TechCrunch, Google said: "The Screenwise Meter iOS app should never have operated under Apple's developer enterprise program - this was a mistake, and we apologize". However, Facebook was abusing the system to distribute the iOS apps to consumers, Apple said. The company notes in a statement that all users voluntarily signed up for the Research app, and were free to opt out at any time. The app tracked the mobile phone usage habits of those partaking in Facebook's program. Worse, the company-wide food and shuttle apps also fell over leaving somewhere between one and 94,000 employees hungry and confused. The company announced Thursday that that had happened. It is now punishing Google, too.

Most users got $20 monthly gift cards from Facebook in exchange for using the app, and some were also given paid referral fees.

Apple's moves this week to clamp down on policy violations come as the company itself hit the headlines on Tuesday (29 January), after a major security flaw was unearthed in its FaceTime application, prompting NY governor Andrew Cuomo to issue a consumer alert, calling the bug an "egregious breach of privacy".