Microsoft has announced that the Xbox One won't require you to use the bundled Kinect accessory. On the surface, that sounds like a win for those who were concerned that Microsoft would use the Kinect and its camera to spy on its users as well as anyone within its field of view. Don't be fooled, though; Microsoft still has plenty of ways to spy on you.
Remember, the NSA can use Skype to spy on you by tapping into your video calls. Xbox One owners can use Kinect to log into and use Skype to make video calls. Also, while Microsoft claims that Kinect is no longer required to use the Xbox One, there is still no option to buy an Xbox One without Kinect. Odds are that many people will still plug in and use Kinect simply because they're being forced to buy it.
Outlook isn't safe from NSA spying either. When the NSA PRISM scandal broke, both the Guardian and the Washington Post, reported that the NSA had access to unencrypted as well as encrypted Outlook emails.
Think the stuff on your SkyDrive account is safe from the NSA? Think again. The same reports indicate that SkyDrive, Microsoft's cloud storage service, also has access to SkyDrive accounts. SkyDrive has more than 250 million users across the globe.
But we're not here to single out Microsoft. Let's not forget that Apple, Facebook, Google, Yahoo and many other companies were identified as NSA collaborators. Chances are that you're using a product made by one or more of these companies. We are -- at home and at the office. That's the main reason why the Kinect reversal isn't such a big blow to those who intrude on the privacy of ordinary citizens. There are so many ways for the NSA to spy on you that the Microsoft's Xbox One Kinect flip flop hardly makes a dent in the steel coffin that is the NSA's domestic spying program.
What do you think? Are you concerned about the NSA spying on ordinary people? Sound off in the comments below.