Windows 10 automatically spies on your children and sends you a dossier of their activity


#1

Originally published at: http://boingboing.net/2015/08/10/windows-10.html


#2

Do you pay extra for that service or is it free?


#3

If Micro$oft manages a big enough privacy fail, people will say:

##Windows 10, worth exactly what you paid for it.##


#4

It’s free and enabled by default. What’s not to love?


#5

Windows 8 did this already. My last laptop turned it on automatically when I created child accounts on my windows 8.0 laptop. You can toggle it off. It probably had to recreate the accounts when upgrading to 10 and did it with default settings.


#6

Granted, I was running a preview version, but I swear that when I set up an account for my 7 year old son (so I didn’t have to have my account cluttered with all his Roblox stuff), I was made aware of this. It certainly did not surprise me the first time I got the email.

Either MS changed something in the release build, or I write this off to our tendency to not read anything that pops up with an “OK” button attached to it.


#7

The more I read about Windows 10, the less I want Microsoft to have it on their computer here.


#8

Not to be a reactionary, but why wouldn’t you want to have parental controls enabled on a child’s PC? I can see turning off the emails (Windows shouldn’t enable absolutely everything by default, I agree there) but I don’t think basic content filtering and time management tools are completely inappropriate.

Incidentally, I am in the process of being licensed as a foster home and content filtering is required on all devices that the kids will have access to. (I have an older Macbook that will be reserved for the foster kids to use.) Just an interesting tidbit in the process.


#9

Breaking News: Doctorow discovers the telephone. News at 5.

This has been around since Windows 8. the only difference is the email. In Win10, you get an explicit “family” link. that sets this up. you can easily disable if you read the setup page. i.e.


#10

For the same reason I don’t need parental controls on his bicycle, his library card or his hockey stick.


#11

Actually a good feature. This may be a valuable tool for catching child predators. This is an opt-in feature, not the way it is portrayed here. http://windows.microsoft.com/en-us/windows-10/set-up-family-after-upgrade


#12

The best way to ‘fix’ it it to uninfuckinstall it and use an operating system that’s not such a creep.


#13

I’m not inherently against parental controls, even though I don’t want to use them myself. I am against them being silently enabled by default. That’s my biggest complaint here.


#14

What’s different is that I never chose to enable these emails. I upgraded my kid’s laptop this weekend and got my first ever such email this morning. I don’t want this and I think it’s creepy that this seems to be a new on-by-default, opt-out feature.


#15

It’s not an opt-in feature. I absolutely did not choose to enable this on my son’s laptop and was surprised to get this unwelcome report this morning.


#16

Was the upgrade from Win8? I believe it had everything except the email summaries already. So it may have been there for a good while, and the only change is the emails getting sent after upgrading to Win10.


#17

You’re wrong. I had several parents tell me over the weekend that they had received such reports and had no idea why (i.e., they did NOT enable this feature).


#18

Interesting. This feature being turned on without asking first is a bit weird. I’m sure I was asked to set up the emails when I set up an account for my daughter on Windows 8.1. I’ll turn them off and see if they’re re-enabled after setting up an account on Windows 10 on my laptop.


#19

You have controls on all of those things. If he misused his bicycle you would see the evidence (out past curfew or an injury) and restrict use. If he misused his hockey stick you would easily see the evidence on the other kid. Usage of the library card is passively monitored by the librarian and the computers there have content filters. Is there something inherently immoral or repressive about a relatively permissive content filter along with a domain level log of activity that could be reviewed?


#20

During setup, you are asked if you want to turn on family safety. If you say yes, this is turned on. If not, it isn’t.