You're wrong about Windows Recall — How Microsoft keeps your data safe on Copilot+ PCs

dharmababa

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Sep 22, 2012
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I generally agree that there is a lot of FUD out there on Recall but curious how it can enable cross-device syncing without uploading anything to the cloud? We can argue and trust that it is stored in the cloud "privately" and not used to train, etc. but some relevant data has to get off the device for cross device scenarios.
 
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JamesDax3

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Mar 18, 2016
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I generally agree that there is a lot of FUD out there on Recall but curious how it can enable cross-device syncing without uploading anything to the cloud? We can argue and trust that it is stored in the cloud "privately" and not used to train, etc. but some relevant data has to get off the device for cross device scenarios.
Across what devices? Your PC and ??
 

Zac Bowden

Windows Central Senior Editor
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Apr 25, 2016
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What a two faced article Zac. 'Recall is safe but don't trust MS.' smdh
The article does not say "don't trust MS," it highlights that it's good to be sceptical of big tech. This includes Apple and Google. But facts are facts: Windows Recall doesn't send personal data to the cloud.
 

Zac Bowden

Windows Central Senior Editor
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Apr 25, 2016
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windowscentral.com
I generally agree that there is a lot of FUD out there on Recall but curious how it can enable cross-device syncing without uploading anything to the cloud? We can argue and trust that it is stored in the cloud "privately" and not used to train, etc. but some relevant data has to get off the device for cross device scenarios.

Windows Recall does not have any cross-device support. No sync, as none of the data leaves your device.
 

whcrumb

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May 30, 2024
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The most likely problems with this "feature" come from scammers, malware, others with physical access to your computer, and, for corporations, legal process. This article rebuts none of them.

Scammers - like the India call centers who stole over $10 billion from US households in 2022 alone - trick the victim into installing remote access tools like Anydesk. Their criminal gains will only be bolstered by being able to turn on Recall, likely with a hack to hide its visual indicator, and then use AI search to find access paths to all available assets.

Malware - Readers here are likely plenty familiar with Microsoft's bugs and the weekly patches to address them. Any exploit allowing root access will allow a hacker to turn on Recall, obfuscate its presence, and extract its data.

Physical Access - Often the people who most want to spy on or obtain passwords from you can be people in your own household. Technical savvy may not be the same for all household members, meaning one person turns it on, and the target won't notice or understand the ramifications.

Legal Process - Discovery: I'm not a lawyer, but I've been a corporate middle manager, and am all-too familiar with the periodic instructions from legal counsel about the requirement that all emails and other work records be archived for legal discovery, and the not infrequent times it is asked for (even for companies who are not particularly doing anything wrong.) Are all of these Recall snapshots now also fair game, and what implications might be drawn from them, fair or not?

Extra-Legal Process: OK, you can award me my tinfoil hat for (just) this last one, but at least the US government can issue secret warrants for "national security" demanding information about targets who are never told about them. For example, the NSA serves these warrants on all the telcos to demand and receive the phone numbers called by essentially every American. I'd be surprised if mass-surveillance is on the initial Recall agenda but targeted surveillance certainly seems possible, even probable.

In short, this article is a disservice to readers. While not all Recall users may experience harmful effects from it, it is near guaranteed that plenty will. Just look at all the problems from the past decade, and ask how is Microsoft going to be able to do any better now?
 

JamesDax3

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Mar 18, 2016
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A lot of people have multiple PCs.

The most likely problems with this "feature" come from scammers, malware, others with physical access to your computer, and, for corporations, legal process. This article rebuts none of them.

Scammers - like the India call centers who stole over $10 billion from US households in 2022 alone - trick the victim into installing remote access tools like Anydesk. Their criminal gains will only be bolstered by being able to turn on Recall, likely with a hack to hide its visual indicator, and then use AI search to find access paths to all available assets.

Malware - Readers here are likely plenty familiar with Microsoft's bugs and the weekly patches to address them. Any exploit allowing root access will allow a hacker to turn on Recall, obfuscate its presence, and extract its data.

Physical Access - Often the people who most want to spy on or obtain passwords from you can be people in your own household. Technical savvy may not be the same for all household members, meaning one person turns it on, and the target won't notice or understand the ramifications.

Legal Process - Discovery: I'm not a lawyer, but I've been a corporate middle manager, and am all-too familiar with the periodic instructions from legal counsel about the requirement that all emails and other work records be archived for legal discovery, and the not infrequent times it is asked for (even for companies who are not particularly doing anything wrong.) Are all of these Recall snapshots now also fair game, and what implications might be drawn from them, fair or not?

Extra-Legal Process: OK, you can award me my tinfoil hat for (just) this last one, but at least the US government can issue secret warrants for "national security" demanding information about targets who are never told about them. For example, the NSA serves these warrants on all the telcos to demand and receive the phone numbers called by essentially every American. I'd be surprised if mass-surveillance is on the initial Recall agenda but targeted surveillance certainly seems possible, even probable.

In short, this article is a disservice to readers. While not all Recall users may experience harmful effects from it, it is near guaranteed that plenty will. Just look at all the problems from the past decade, and ask how is Microsoft going to be able to do any better now?
OH FOR GODS SAKE STFU. Your tin foil hat is on too tight.
 

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