Apple Inc CEO Tim Cook Meets with U.S. President Obama Together with Google, Facebook, Twitter, Yahoo Execs

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By Reissa Su | December 18, 2013 4:36 PM EST

Apple Inc CEO Tim Cook has met with U.S. President Barack Obama together with other top tech company executives like Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer, Google Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt, Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg and Twitter CEO Dick Costolo, among others.

Mr Obama has consulted with tech companies since the administration remains under pressure to limit government spying on communications. The top tech executives intended to urge President Obama to implement change on surveillance policies.

The top tech companies have submitted a joint open letter to Washington last week to press the Obama administration.

In a statement, the White Hosue said the meeting with tech company heads and CEOs was regarded as a chance to hear their side of the story, as part of its process of reviewing signals intelligence programs.

Apple, Yahoo, Google, Facebook and Microsoft were among the companies that signed the joint open letter which urged the U.S to take the lead in changing the surveillance practices of governments. Calls for an end to blatant spying came after the National Security Agency (NSA) accessed phone and Internet networks for surveillance.

Mr Obama has previously defended the work of the NSA as necessary to deter and prevent another terrorist attack. However, he said he will propose some limitations to protect the people from unwarranted spying on privacy.

Mr Obama has promised to initiate reforms to restore more confidence in people's security and privacy.

Aside from spying issues, the president will also address other issues in the meeting concerning the government's HealthCare.Gov and how IT can help in maximizing IT efficiency, innovation and customer service.  

After the meeting, no one made an official statement. When Apple CEO Tim Cook was asked to comment, he only said the meeting was "great" and revealed nothing more as he left the White House.

The news comes after the media-shy Apple CEO received a Lifetime Achievement Award from his alma mater and gave an inspiring speech in support of gay rights. Tim Cook has urged U.S. Congress to pass the Employment Nondiscrimination Act to protect employees from discrimination when applying for jobs. Mr Cook wrote his opinion in the Wall Street Journal that Apple Inc is a company that welcomes employees regardless of their race, gender, nationality or sexual orientation.

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