Apple prefers to ensure secrecy for its products to be launched. But still, leaks often get out on the regular basis. These leaks are particularly getting out from its supply chain. Apple now intends to make some changes to update the security guidelines for its manufacturing partners. Interesting is that a leaked document has indicated that Apple is cracking down on leaks.
According to the updated guidelines, manufacturing facilities must keep a criminal background check on assembly line employees having access to Apple products that are yet to be launched or say unreleased. In past, background checks only applied to certain employees. The workers having criminal histories are restricted from entering an area of the facility where unreleased products are being developed or assembled.
Apple is also upgrading its computer systems to check the period components remain at workstations. In case, a part is kept in a single place for longer, security alerts will be made. Moreover, at many checkpoints, guards will keep a detailed record of locations and movements of employees taking “sensitive” components from one place to another.
The same new rule is implemented outside of the factory as well. For instance, if a visitor comes to the facility, he must show off a government-issued ID for vetting. External surveillance camera coverage must have the ability to capture all four sides of transport vehicles. Management is also supposed to keep any video demonstrating the destruction of prototypes or faulty components for a minimum of 180 days.
The most controversial rule is that plants are now not allowed to keep biometric information from any Apple worker visiting the facility. But, Apple still needs fingerprints and facial scans of plant personnel. It is a clear depiction of a double standard in a work environment and not even much sensible when it comes to security.
If anything, factory workers coming to the facility on daily basis and are recognized by management and collaborators poses less threat as compared to some random Apple worker visiting for the first time. Even ID badges might be fake and biometric screening is the best solution for defense against physical penetration.
Just like all other leaks, this one should also be taken as a rumor. Apple made no confirmation for the policy changes and considering the nature, it might never come true.