There are other forms of this, like planned obsolescence or the right to repair issues I’ve talked about many times, but to me it’s becoming a bit more nakedly obvious that the stated desire for security comes with too many positive side effects for the companies for that to be an accident.
As consumers, the problem with this is that we’re sort of at the mercy of these companies when they make these cases, because how are we supposed to know any better?
Companies are going to continue doing this unless they get publicly called out for it, so let’s give it a name. Here’s what I’ve got: Security Hype as a Dumb Excuse (SHaaDE).
There are actual security concerns out there that must be taken seriously, as Margrethe Vestager put it, but things that end users did not ask for that don’t actually keep them safe, and further act to either kneecap their competitors or support your partners are not valid reasons to strengthen our security.
So, if you think a big company is trying to screw you over for overstated security reasons that might be hiding some under-the-radar ploy to protect or extend their competitive advantage, throw them some #SHaaDE. (Use the hashtag, to make sure they hear it!)
After all, there are plenty of other options out there that can keep you safe online without arbitrarily limiting what your desired tools are capable of.