Iâ€™m defending the iPad. Not because Iâ€™m an Apple fanboy. Not because Iâ€™m going to buy one. But because I think thereâ€™s potential to positively change the personal computing experience in a way that helps government sleep better at night. Iâ€™m not talking about the iPad itself, but what the App store can become via the iPad.
Currently, the way most us connect to the web is through the browser, which was meant to only take you from point A to B. Unfortunately, the world wide web is a dangerous place if you donâ€™t know how to navigate. Every day, innocent consumers fall prey to malicious scams and phishing schemes, and there isnâ€™t much the government can do to protect them.
With the App Store, not only do you access the internet without going through a browser, but the barriers to entry for service providers should theoretically weed out illegitimate third parties. With a structured vetting process (at least security-wise, theoretically) and a crowdsourced reviewing process, there really isnâ€™t an incentive for virtual predators to get on the App store. For the time being, you could be pretty confident that your apps arenâ€™t trying to steal your personal information or plant bugs into your device.
But the App store is only limited to the iPad and iPhone. Is that enough to really call this a win for internet security?
Yes, the App store is only available to the relatively small number of internet users with pockets deep enough to afford the Apple products. But perhaps, the overwhelming success of the App store would lead Apple to consider expanding to the personal computing platform as an alternative to the browser.
No, the browser is not going to be replaced anytime soon. And internet security on your browser or mobile device will never be completely bulletproof. But for certain types of online activity, such as financial transactions, account creations, or anything that requires personal identifiable information, wouldnâ€™t we feel more comfortable knowing that the servers and personnel on the other side of these transmissions are really who they say they are, and will really do what they say theyâ€™ll do?