FBI escalates war with Apple: ‘marketing’ bigger concern than terror
The FBI accused Apple of prioritizing its public relations strategy over a terrorism investigation on Friday in a significant escalation of this week’s war between the tech company and the law enforcement agency.
The accusation, made in a court filing demanding Apple comply with an order to unlock an iPhone belonging to the San Bernardino terrorists, represents a nadir in the relationship between two opponents that previously extended each other public respect.
“Apple’s current refusal to comply with the Court’s Order, despite the technical feasibility of doing so, instead appears to be based on its concern for its business model and public brand marketing strategy,” Justice Department attorneys wrote in the Friday filing.
Tim Cook, Apple’s CEO, called the court order “chilling” in a letter published on the company’s website. Cook called for public debate and has been backed in his fight by some of tech’s biggest names, including Google’s chief executive Sundar Pichai, WhatsApp and whistleblower Edward Snowden.
“The United States government has demanded that Apple take an unprecedented step which threatens the security of our customers. We oppose this order, which has implications far beyond the legal case at hand,” he wrote.
The government and the US’s most valuable company have been shadowboxing over digital privacy since fall 2014, when Apple expanded the use of encryption on its phones. In a shift, Apple said it would no longer be able to unlock devices for authorities, even if faced with a warrant…
Read the rest of this article originally posted on The Guardian