There has been a lot of talk over the FBI wanting Apple to create a program that can unlock the iPhone of one of the alleged mass murderers in the San Bernardino attacks that took place two months ago. Many think the FBI is going too far and creating a “big government” situation, while others say Apple must do what it can in order to protect all U.S. citizens.
According to the Guardian, Apple’s chief lawyer Bruce Sewell is warning legislators on the House judiciary committee that the creating a fix to break into the shooter’s iPhone will jeopardize cyber security.
“‘Hackers and cyber criminals could use this to wreak havoc on our privacy and personal safety,’ Sewell will tell the House panel at a hotly anticipated hearing on Tuesday, according to prepared remarks the company has released. ‘Some of you might have an iPhone in your pocket right now, and if you think about it, there’s probably more information stored on that iPhone than a thief could steal by breaking into your house,’ Sewell will testify.”
The Guardian adds that Sewell’s testimony will follow that of James Comey, the FBI director who has, since 2014, publicly warned that thorough mobile encryption will jeopardize law enforcement.
Some news outlets have defended Apple. Alan Butler of Newsday says that if Apple loses, citizens should bid privacy goodbye.
“This case is not an isolated incident, and what happens with it matters for all Americans — not just Apple and its customers. It may seem like there isn’t much downside to Apple assisting the FBI in the San Bernardino investigation, but that is not true for at least two reasons.”
Butler adds that what the California court ordered Apple to do would impact the security of all iPhones. He also believes that if the court order is upheld, it will set a dangerous precedent and will allow investigators to create security loopholes in other smartphone devices.
However, Paul Sperry from Investor’s Business Daily believes that Apple should help the FBI.
“Apple’s excuses for defying a federal order to help the FBI unlock the San Bernardino terrorist’s iPhone and save lives have gone from hyperbolic to apocalyptic. Relax, Big Brother won’t creep into your phone if it complies.”
Sperry believes Apple doesn’t have to worry; technology is already solving privacy issues. He also says that contrary to Apple’s statements, this is only about one isolated iPhone.
“The FBI is not asking for a master key to get into all phones, just one to unlock Farook’s, which agents believe contains the names of other terrorists and clues to other plots,” Sperry continues.
However, The Wall Street Journal notes that a lot of tech companies are supporting Apple.
“Several tech companies, including Google parent Alphabet Inc., Facebook Inc. and Microsoft Corp., plan to file a joint motion supporting Apple Inc. in its court fight against the Justice Department over unlocking an alleged terrorist’s iPhone, according to people familiar with the companies’ plans,” writes reporter Deepa Seetharaman.
Verizon, Amazon, and Yahoo are some other companies supporting Apple, according to the Washington Post. Those involved in the case say the amount of support is unparalleled. However, it could also mean that these other companies are afraid of the FBI intruding on their products.
Do you support Apple and think that the FBI is overreaching their boundaries? Let us know in the comments section.
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