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Apple's Cook says proposed EU tech rules threaten security of iPhones

Credit: REUTERS/STEPHEN LAM

Apple boss Tim Cook took aim on Wednesday at proposed European rules aimed at curbing the power of U.S. tech giants, saying they could pose security and privacy risks to iPhones.

By Mathieu Rosemain and Foo Yun Chee

PARIS/BRUSSELS, June 16 (Reuters) - Apple AAPL.O boss Tim Cook took aim on Wednesday at proposed European rules aimed at curbing the power of U.S. tech giants, saying they could pose security and privacy risks to iPhones.

Cook, in his first public comments about the Digital Markets Act (DMA) proposed by EU antitrust chief Margrethe Vestager, said parts were good but others were not. He said he feared the draft rules would lead to more installing of apps that do not come via Apple's App Store, or "side-loading".

"You take an example here where I don't think it's in the best interest (of the user): the current DMA language that is being discussed would force side-loading on the iPhone," the Apple CEO, speaking remotely, said at VivaTech, France´s biggest tech conference.

"And so this would be an ultimate way of getting apps onto the iPhone," he said. "It would destroy the security of the iPhone, and a lot of the privacy initiatives that we've built into the App Store or the privacy intrusion labels and app-tracking transparency," he added.

Earlier this month, EU lawmaker Andreas Schwab, who is leading the European Parliament scrutiny of the draft rules, said he wanted to beef up the legislation and narrow its scope to just big companies like Google GOOGL.O, Amazon AMZN.O, Apple and Facebook FB.O.

Apple would take part in the debate and try to find a way forward, Cook said.

(Reporting by Foo Yun Chee in Brussels and Mathieu Rosemain in Paris; Additional reporting by Gwenaelle Barzic in Paris; Editing by Pravin Char)

((foo.yunchee@thomsonreuters.com; +32 2 287 6844; Reuters Messaging: foo.yunchee.thomsonreuters.com@reuters.net))

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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