Apple Defends Personal Privacy from U.S. Gov

Discussion in 'THREAD ARCHIVES' started by Boba Fit, Feb 17, 2016.

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  1. This is the letter Apple has posted on their website from Tim Cook. The link to Apples website where the letter can be read directly from the source is, Apple Customer Letter.

    "The Need for Encryption

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    Smartphones, led by iPhone, have become an essential part of our lives. People use them to store an incredible amount of personal information, from our private conversations to our photos, our music, our notes, our calendars and contacts, our financial information and health data, even where we have been and where we are going.
    All that information needs to be protected from hackers and criminals who want to access it, steal it, and use it without our knowledge or permission. Customers expect Apple and other technology companies to do everything in our power to protect their personal information, and at Apple we are deeply committed to safeguarding their data.
    Compromising the security of our personal information can ultimately put our personal safety at risk. That is why encryption has become so important to all of us.
    For many years, we have used encryption to protect our customers’ personal data because we believe it’s the only way to keep their information safe. We have even put that data out of our own reach, because we believe the contents of your iPhone are none of our business.

    The San Bernardino Case

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    We were shocked and outraged by the deadly act of terrorism in San Bernardino last December. We mourn the loss of life and want justice for all those whose lives were affected. The FBI asked us for help in the days following the attack, and we have worked hard to support the government’s efforts to solve this horrible crime. We have no sympathy for terrorists.
    When the FBI has requested data that’s in our possession, we have provided it. Apple complies with valid subpoenas and search warrants, as we have in the San Bernardino case. We have also made Apple engineers available to advise the FBI, and we’ve offered our best ideas on a number of investigative options at their disposal.
    We have great respect for the professionals at the FBI, and we believe their intentions are good. Up to this point, we have done everything that is both within our power and within the law to help them. But now the U.S. government has asked us for something we simply do not have, and something we consider too dangerous to create. They have asked us to build a backdoor to the iPhone.
    Specifically, the FBI wants us to make a new version of the iPhone operating system, circumventing several important security features, and install it on an iPhone recovered during the investigation. In the wrong hands, this software — which does not exist today — would have the potential to unlock any iPhone in someone’s physical possession.
    The FBI may use different words to describe this tool, but make no mistake: Building a version of iOS that bypasses security in this way would undeniably create a backdoor. And while the government may argue that its use would be limited to this case, there is no way to guarantee such control.

    The Threat to Data Security

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    Some would argue that building a backdoor for just one iPhone is a simple, clean-cut solution. But it ignores both the basics of digital security and the significance of what the government is demanding in this case.
    In today’s digital world, the “key” to an encrypted system is a piece of information that unlocks the data, and it is only as secure as the protections around it. Once the information is known, or a way to bypass the code is revealed, the encryption can be defeated by anyone with that knowledge.
    The government suggests this tool could only be used once, on one phone. But that’s simply not true. Once created, the technique could be used over and over again, on any number of devices. In the physical world, it would be the equivalent of a master key, capable of opening hundreds of millions of locks — from restaurants and banks to stores and homes. No reasonable person would find that acceptable.
    The government is asking Apple to hack our own users and undermine decades of security advancements that protect our customers — including tens of millions of American citizens — from sophisticated hackers and cybercriminals. The same engineers who built strong encryption into the iPhone to protect our users would, ironically, be ordered to weaken those protections and make our users less safe.
    We can find no precedent for an American company being forced to expose its customers to a greater risk of attack. For years, cryptologists and national security experts have been warning against weakening encryption. Doing so would hurt only the well-meaning and law-abiding citizens who rely on companies like Apple to protect their data. Criminals and bad actors will still encrypt, using tools that are readily available to them.

    A Dangerous Precedent

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    Rather than asking for legislative action through Congress, the FBI is proposing an unprecedented use of the All Writs Act of 1789 to justify an expansion of its authority.
    The government would have us remove security features and add new capabilities to the operating system, allowing a passcode to be input electronically. This would make it easier to unlock an iPhone by “brute force,” trying thousands or millions of combinations with the speed of a modern computer.
    The implications of the government’s demands are chilling. If the government can use the All Writs Act to make it easier to unlock your iPhone, it would have the power to reach into anyone’s device to capture their data. The government could extend this breach of privacy and demand that Apple build surveillance software to intercept your messages, access your health records or financial data, track your location, or even access your phone’s microphone or camera without your knowledge.
    Opposing this order is not something we take lightly. We feel we must speak up in the face of what we see as an overreach by the U.S. government.
    We are challenging the FBI’s demands with the deepest respect for American democracy and a love of our country. We believe it would be in the best interest of everyone to step back and consider the implications.
    While we believe the FBI’s intentions are good, it would be wrong for the government to force us to build a backdoor into our products. And ultimately, we fear that this demand would undermine the very freedoms and liberty our government is meant to protect.

    Tim Cook"

    What are your thoughts and opinions? Personally, I think Apple has done a wonderful thing. They have set a huge precedent here. The Government can't just swoop in and say, "Give us what we want, we don't care about your policies or privacy." Especially when it is over stretching the bounds of the government.

    (Please, none of the Microsoft master race bullshit. No one gives a flying fuck.)
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  2. Bravo Apple. The anti-encryption bullshit has gone on far too long, and I'm glad Apple has drawn the line in the sand here. I hope other companies do the same if they're pressured to open backdoors on their devices, because otherwise I'll be forced to switch over to Apple hardware on sheer principle and that would be a hassle. :P
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  3. Just unlock the fucking phone for them. It's owner was responsible for an act of terrorism. Fuck his right to privacy.

    Otherwise, woo. Take that big gub'ment!

    But really. How hard would it be to unlock a single phone and toss the program/software/hardware/system? Make it a single use and it self removes? Tied only to that one phone?
  4. That isn't the problem. Apple doesn't mind helping. The problem, is that the FBI wants them to create a backdoor in the IOS itself, so they can access every Iphone. They want the technology for it, not just the data from the terrorists phone. And the FBI is using the pressure of the public, by making people believe that Apple is not just unlocking it.

    When the FBI gets the technology, the government will be able to backdoor into every single Iphone. It isn't about the terrorists right to privacy, the FBI is trying to force Apple to give them the technology, not just the data from the phone.

    That is the big issue. If anyone here honestly believes the government is going to toss the technology completely after this issue, is way to naive.
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  5. That makes more sense. No ones quite explained it clearly from all I've heard so far.

    Thank you!
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  6. [​IMG]
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  7. Sadly, they will find a way with or without Apple's help. Do you really think they're just going to shrug off the rejection and say "Well, we tried!"

    They're just being lazy about it and wanting Apple to look like the bad guys when it comes out.
  8. Well, no doubt about that, this IS the US Gov we're talking about

    Though I'm curious that Apple didn't point out that what the gov is trying to do also directly violates the Constitution as well, not that the US Gov gives a damn about that anymore
  9. That isn’t necessarily true. Apple did develop the technology and the IOS. So They can develop a fail safe since they know what the government is trying to do.

    They won’t shrug off the rejection. They are taking it to the courts, I think. Trying to use old legislation to force Apple to comply.

    They are using a very old legislation to defend their actions. Saying that they are not violating the constitution since it is plausible by law.

    I refer to what I said above. By using a bit of legislation from 1789, They are essentially protecting themselves from their actions being deemed unconstitutional.
  10. Yes I'm aware of what you said, that bit of legislation should mean absolutely nothing in the face of the Constitution which is the higher law, and if the US government wasn't corrupt up the wazoo, that would mean something

    That would be my reaction to anyone telling me that some piece of legislation takes higher precedence over the very document and law that founded the damn country
  11. In technicality of things, a law cannot contradict the constitution in the first place, so the law is sound. However, it all depends on the Government’s interpretation and use of the law in this attempt.

    This could very well make it’s way into the supreme court, where that legislation itself could be challenged.
  12. And this is why I'm an Apple customer. Good to know SOME companies actually have some fucking balls and common sense!
  13. The very fact something like that could be considered to be up for debate makes me sick to my stomach
  14. It doesn’t bother me to much. Especially with a piece of legislation that old. As the people that wrote it and passed it, had a reason for their time. The way our supreme court, or Federal courts interpret things now, is most likely different. Since the culture has changed, and society has changed, some of these no longer apply and can provide unforeseen loopholes, like we are seeing in this case.

    Which is why the Supreme court was created. I would like to see Apple take this to the courts and challenge the All Writs Act of 1789. Since the Government is trying to use it to overstep their Authority of the constitution, challenge the laws Constitutionality to begin with.
  15. Not the piece of legislation

    The very idea that anyone could even debate the fact of whether or not said legislation could or should even challenge the amendment that protects our privacy
  16. It is why I think Apple should challenge the legislation in Court. The Legislation is so vague in its actions.

    That is literally, the Act in in entirety. Their are a few requirements that bus be met for it to be used, however. But the vagueness of the legislation, and the ability for the government to manipulate it as they are doing, is demonstrating it to be unconstitutional and outdated.
  17. I really don't see what the big deal is. Honestly, if you have something to hide from the government that is the only reason you'd be against this. And if your worried about them 'collecting' stuff on you, being on the grid in any shape way or form, leaves a paper trail. They'll find out details about your life if they can 'hack' your phone or not. The fact that Apple made something that can remove all your info seems very stupid in my mind. Either for people cheating and wanting to hide what they are doing from the person they are with or criminals. I could MAYBE understand it if someone stole your phone and tried to use any personal data you were keeping on your phone, which is why I don't keep important things like that on my phone. That's just my two cents.

  18. This says it perfectly. When a country is founded on Civil Liberties with the explicit idea of its citizens being free, the government spying on you is now sidling down your freedom. It is causing the government to gain more power. The more power they gain, the more corrupt they become. They get into the idea, that the population is ok with seceding it's freedoms, or that they aren't hurting the citizens of the country. So they then begin thinking it is ok to take more and more civil liberties away. It is a snowball effect.

    Take for example, gun control. Their is no national database for every gun owner. So if the government passed a gun control law, banning all firearms, they couldn't possibly know all the citizens that do own firearms. So how do they circumvent this, they hack into everyones data streams and find who talks about having guns. They then send a team of agents knocking on your door. That is what is known as governmental tyranny.

    Why is this a big deal? Because we formed this country on specific civil liberties to ensure human rights for our citizens. We would not fundamentally be the United States of America, if we began to give up those civil liberties.

    It isn't paranoia. It could take decades and generations of citizens before the government snatched away all the rights of our free citizens. I may long dead when that happens, but as the founding fathers so brilliantly described, it is the duty of us, as free citizens to continue to ensure the civil liberties of those generations coming after us.

    That is truly what it means to be a free, patriotic citizen of the Unites States.
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  19. Are you really sure that idea of ANY government playing big brother doesn't make you uncomfortable at all?
  20. The whole "if you haven't done anything wrong then you have nothing to hide" argument has always rubbed me the wrong way. I'd write a long spiel on it, but I'm on my phone and that would take far too much effort, so have an article instead.

    You Have Something to Hide
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