If you haven’t heard by now, the iPhone apps PATH and HIPSTER have been copying every individual’s address book on every iPhone and iPad to their own company servers. I can’t imagine what they’re going to do with all that stolen information, but I’m personally furious these scumbags got away with it.
I don’t know of any way to block theft like this on a non-jailbroken iOS, but maybe putting up a digital equivalent of a “no trespassing” sign will keep future apps from trying something like this.
Tonight, I made a EULA for my own address book and contact list.
The first thing I did was go on my iPhone to SETTINGS, GENERAL, and ABOUT.
In the ABOUT page, I wrote down the NAME of my iPhone on the top of the page (REiPhone).
I then went to the bottom of the ABOUT page and copied my Serial Number for my iPhone (12345ABCD)
Then I went to Rocket Lawyer and threw together a custom EULA with my information.
To make this your own EULA, copy, paste and replace everything in a RED BOLD FONT. Specifically, you’ll need to replace…
1. REiPhone – serial 12345ABCD with your own iPhone’s name and serial number
2. REiPhone with your own iPhone’s name
3. TEXAS with the name of your State
IPHONE CONTACT INFORMATION END USER LICENSE AGREEMENT
The contact database and address book content and information on REiPhone – serial 12345ABCD (“the Software Product”) and accompanying documentation is licensed and NOT sold or intended for sale. This Software Product is protected by copyright laws and treaties, as well as laws and treaties related to other forms of intellectual property. REiPhone or its subsidiaries, affiliates, and suppliers (collectively “REiPhone“) own intellectual property rights in the Software Product. The Licensee’s (“you” or “your”) license to download, use, copy, or change the Software Product is subject to these rights and to all the terms and conditions of this End User License Agreement (“Agreement”).
YOU ACCEPT AND AGREE TO BE BOUND BY THE TERMS OF THIS AGREEMENT BY INSTALLING, USING, OR COPYING THE SOFTWARE PRODUCT. IF YOU DO NOT AGREE TO ALL OF THE TERMS OF THIS AGREEMENT, YOU MUST NOT INSTALL, USE, OR COPY THE SOFTWARE PRODUCT.
This Agreement expressly forbids you from installing and/or using any copy of the Software Product. In addition, you may not make any archival copies of the Software Product. The Software Product may not be on any storage medium of any type for any duration, and may not be used as a condition for the installation of any of Licensee’s product or any material provided from the Licensee. This Agreement does not permit the installation or use of multiple copies of the Software Product, or the installation of the Software Product on any computer other than the original REiPhone at any given time, or on any system that allows shared use of applications, on a multi-user network, or on any configuration or system of computers that allows multiple users. Multiple copy use or installation of the Software Product is not allowed under any circumstances.
Restrictions on Transfer
Without first obtaining the express written consent of REiPhone, you may not assign your rights and obligations under this Agreement, or redistribute, encumber, sell, rent, lease, sublicense, or otherwise transfer your rights to the Software Product.
Restrictions on Use
You may not use, copy, or install the Software Product on any system, or permit the use, copying, or installation of the Software Product on any computer. You may not use, copy, or install the Software Product on any system with identical systems as REiPhone or permit the use, copying, or installation by any user, or on any computer other than REiPhone. You may not decompile, “reverse-engineer”, disassemble, or otherwise attempt to derive the source code and components for the Software Product. You may not use the database portion of the Software Product whatsoever.
Restrictions on Alteration
You may not modify the Software Product or create any derivative work of the Software Product or its accompanying information. Derivative works include but are not limited to translations. You may not alter any files or libraries in any portion of the Software Product. You may not reproduce the database portion or create any tables or reports relating to the database portion.
Restrictions on Copying
You may not copy any part of the Software Product. You may not make any archival copies to be stored on any medium other than the drive physically installed on REiPhone.
Disclaimer of Warranties and Limitation of Liability
UNLESS OTHERWISE EXPLICITLY AGREED TO IN WRITING BY REIPHONE, REIPHONE MAKES NO OTHER WARRANTIES, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, IN FACT OR IN LAW, INCLUDING, BUT NOT LIMITED TO, ANY IMPLIED WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTABILITY OR FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE OTHER THAN AS SET FORTH IN THIS AGREEMENT OR IN THE LIMITED WARRANTY DOCUMENTS PROVIDED WITH THE SOFTWARE PRODUCT.
REiPhone makes no warranty that the Software Product will meet your requirements or operate under your specific conditions of use. REiPhone makes no warranty that operation of the Software Product will be secure, error free, or free from interruption. YOU MUST DETERMINE WHETHER THE SOFTWARE PRODUCT SUFFICIENTLY MEETS YOUR REQUIREMENTS FOR SECURITY AND UNINTERRUPTABILITY. YOU BEAR SOLE RESPONSIBILITY AND ALL LIABILITY FOR ANY LOSS INCURRED DUE TO FAILURE OF THE SOFTWARE PRODUCT TO MEET YOUR REQUIREMENTS. REIPHONE WILL NOT, UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES, BE RESPONSIBLE OR LIABLE FOR THE LOSS OF DATA ON ANY COMPUTER OR INFORMATION STORAGE DEVICE.
UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES SHALL REIPHONE, ITS DIRECTORS, OFFICERS, EMPLOYEES OR AGENTS BE LIABLE TO YOU OR ANY OTHER PARTY FOR INDIRECT, CONSEQUENTIAL, SPECIAL, INCIDENTAL, PUNITIVE, OR EXEMPLARY DAMAGES OF ANY KIND (INCLUDING LOST REVENUES OR PROFITS OR LOSS OF BUSINESS) RESULTING FROM THIS AGREEMENT, OR FROM THE FURNISHING, PERFORMANCE, INSTALLATION, OR USE OF THE SOFTWARE PRODUCT, WHETHER DUE TO A BREACH OF CONTRACT, BREACH OF WARRANTY, OR THE NEGLIGENCE OF REIPHONE OR ANY OTHER PARTY, EVEN IF REIPHONE IS ADVISED BEFOREHAND OF THE POSSIBILITY OF SUCH DAMAGES. TO THE EXTENT THAT THE APPLICABLE JURISDICTION LIMITS REIPHONE‘S ABILITY TO DISCLAIM ANY IMPLIED WARRANTIES, THIS DISCLAIMER SHALL BE EFFECTIVE TO THE MAXIMUM EXTENT PERMITTED.
Limitation of Remedies and Damages
There is no remedy for a breach of this Agreement or of any warranty included in this Agreement. REiPhone reserves the right to deny access to the information on REiPhone, as well as deny any form of replacement and/or remedy. All limited warranties on the Software Product are granted only to you and are non-transferable. You agree to indemnify and hold REiPhone harmless from all claims, judgments, liabilities, expenses, or costs arising from your breach of this Agreement and/or acts or omissions.
Governing Law, Jurisdiction and Costs
This Agreement is governed by the laws of Texas, without regard to Texas’s conflict or choice of law provisions.
If any provision of this Agreement shall be held to be invalid or unenforceable, the remainder of this Agreement shall remain in full force and effect. To the extent any express or implied restrictions are not permitted by applicable laws, these express or implied restrictions shall remain in force and effect to the maximum extent permitted by such applicable laws.
After copying and pasting the EULA into your favorite text editor and making the substitutions, mail a copy to your iPhone.
Once it arrives, drag-copy over the entire body of the EULA and COPY.
Now go to CONTACTS and create a NEW CONTACT
Type for the First Name : IPHONE CONTACT INFORMATION EULA
Type for the Last Name : *AAA
Now tap on the ADD FIELD button at the bottom of the NEW CONTACT window and choose NOTES.
When the NOTES field appears, PASTE in the EULA and save the contact.
Now the first contact in your address book will be your own EULA. When you click on the contact for more information, you can scroll through the legalese even though only a few lines appear at first.
This might be as effective as throwing a match in the ocean right now, and I’m honestly not sure how effective this would be against a professional corporate rottweiler of an attorney, but maybe if another app steals my contact information and sees this EULA, the scumbag app’s legal department will pounce on the developers and demand my contact database be deleted out of “an abundance of caution”.
I have a feeling once a member of congress gets their private address book posted on a public forum, real Federal legislation will pass in that makes data theft an interstate felony punishable by some “bankrupt the company and their owners” kinds of fines. For now, I would settle for Apple kicking developers like this out of the App store and ban them from ever coding for iOS again. (Hey, I can dream!)