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Secret Service investigates Apple Store spy camera artist [video]

Zach Epstein
July 8th, 2011 at 1:45 PM

Brooklyn-based artist Kyle McDonald finds himself in hot water after secretly photographing Apple Store customers while they shopping for computers. “I thought maybe we could see ourselves doing this we would think more about our computers and how we’re using them,” McDonald told Mashable. Without the staff’s knowledge, the 25-year-old installed software on computers at two Apple Store locations in New York that used their integrated webcams to capture photos every 60 seconds. The software then automatically sent the photos to McDonald. The electronic artist published his project on his site and a dedicated Tumblr blog, and eyebrows were raised soon after. Mashable reports that McDonald was soon approached by the U.S. Secret Service, and his personal computers have been confiscated as part of the investigation into alleged computer fraud. McDonald says he did get Apple Store security guards’ permission to take photos in the stores, and he also asked permission while photographing patrons — with his handheld camera. McDonald makes no mention of gaining Apple’s permission to install software on display computers that secretly snaps photos and sends them to McDonald behind the scenes. A video of McDonald’s project can be viewed below.


Zach Epstein

Zach Epstein has worked in and around ICT for more than 15 years, first in marketing and business development with two private telcos, then as a writer and editor covering business news, consumer electronics and telecommunications. Zach’s work has been quoted by countless top news publications in the US and around the world. He was also recently named one of the world's top-10 “power mobile influencers” by Forbes, as well as one of Inc. Magazine's top-30 Internet of Things experts.

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