Google, Facebook, Twitter, EFF, ACLU, others to file unsolicited amicus brief on behalf of Apple against FBI demand

“Tech giants are gathering in Apple’s corner over the Silicon Valley giant’s battle with the federal government,” Marco della Cava reports for USA Today.

“Google, Facebook and Twitter are part of a coalition that will file an unsolicited amicus brief on behalf of Apple,” della Cava reports. “Microsoft declined to comment on whether it was part of the group, but spokesman Rian Lawson confirmed the company intends to file a brief. The joint amicus brief is expected to be filed next week, according to representatives from the other three companies, who who were not authorized to speak publicly about the matter.”

“The Electronic Frontier Foundation is among those planning to file an amicus brief, which refers to an unsolicited ‘friend of the court’ opinion,” della Cava reports. “Also planning to file are the American Civil Liberties Union, whose staff attorney Alex Abdo said in a statement that ‘the government’s request also risks setting a dangerous precedent. If the FBI can force Apple to hack into its customers’ devices, then so too can every repressive regime in the rest of the world.’ Amnesty International is taking similar action…”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: This will help some currently rather confused American citizens to see the light.

SEE ALSO:
Microsoft ‘wholeheartedly’ backs Apple’s refusal to assist U.S government in unlocking iPhone – February 25, 2016
Apple asks judge to vacate order on locked iPhone – February 25, 2016
Apple may use a First Amendment defense against FBI iPhone hack demand – and it just might work – February 25, 2016
FBI chief acknowledges Apple case may set privacy precedent – February 25, 2016
Gruber: The next step in iPhone impregnability – February 25, 2016
U.S. government sought data from 15 Apple devices in last four months – February 25, 2016
Apple CEO Tim Cook says iPhone-cracking software the ‘equivalent of cancer’ – February 24, 2016
Apple’s fight with U.S. could speed development of devices impervious to government intrusion – February 24, 2016
Apple to argue that FBI court order violates its free-speech rights – February 24, 2016
Apple, the U.S. government, and security – February 24, 2016
Congressman Ted Lieu asks FBI to drop demand that Apple hack iPhones – February 23, 2016
In the fight to hack iPhones, the U.S. government has more to lose than Apple – February 23, 2016
Here are the 12 other cases where the U.S. government has demanded Apple help it hack into iPhones – February 23, 2016
John McAfee blasts FBI for ‘illiterate’ order to create Apple iPhone backdoor – February 23, 2016
U.S. government seeks to force Apple to extract data from a dozen more iPhones – February 23, 2016
Apple CEO Cook: They’d have to cart us out in a box before we’d create a backdoor – February 22, 2016
Tim Cook’s memo to Apple employees: ‘This case is about more than a single phone’ – February 22, 2016
Obama administration: We’re only demanding Apple hack just one iPhone – February 17, 2016

26 Comments

  1. Interesting that in general it’s the more politically liberal that are coming to the defense of Apple. Silicon Valley firms are known for being very liberal. The ACLU has been a target of conservatives for a very long time; one could not count how many times people like Rush Limbaugh has bashed them.

    Obviously there are exceptions, and certainly there are both Democrats and Republicans, both conservative and liberal, on either side of the issue. But mostly the ones who worry about individual privacy rights are those who would be considered politically liberal. They are the same ones who criticize when police treat minorities unfairly, they are the same ones who criticized Bush for politicizing 9-11 and taking us to war into Iraq.

    1. I resent when someone takes an issue and immediately reduces it to a liberal vs. conservative debate.

      Why can’t each issue be debated on its own merits?

      This is no better than reducing it to an issue of race.

    2. All those words…“in general” and “obviously” and “mostly” are words of “waffling.”

      People don’t take people seriously when they waffle. Just saying.

  2. I’ve disagreed with some of these companies (Google etc) policies but I acknowledge that they are not ‘stupid’. Everybody with half a brain realizes how dangerous this ‘tool which will lead to general backdoor policies’ is. Dangerous to privacy, safety and trade

    (the high tech industry is like one of the last ‘golden geese’ of the developed world as low cost manufacturing ain’t coming back. Which foreign customer will trust USA high tech products if backdoors are required on USA phones, PCs, routers, servers, cables as the FBI etc have been fighting for for a long time ? ).

    Google must be thinking what would happen is someone hacked into a Google Car and cause it to go Crazy on the Highway….

      1. shoot I hadn’t seen the video before

        I was just making sort of joke, the more is revealed the scarier it looks.
        Are those ‘professionals’ like the FBi who are paid to understand these issues (like hackers) completely clueless playing with the Pandora’s box?

      2. I would like to drive home this point even further. Recently, a reporter in Turkey had been following a story that the Turkish government was supplying arms to ISIS. Apparently, she had uncovered trucks full of weapons heading from Turkey to ISIS held territory. A day or so later she mysteriously died in a car accident in Turkey. The Turkish government is suspect.

        One example of a slippery slope in the Apple-FBI case would be the government demanding any computer company, including car manufacturers, give them access. The argument will be that they have to stop the terrorists. If Apple loses it means the security apparatus, hackers, unscrupulous employers, mischievous kids, lobbyists, enemy governments, etc. will turn computer systems like the car into a weapon. How safe do you feel now?

    1. You might want to recheck your assumptions. That, or hang with a different group of people.

      The majority of conservatives I’m acquainted with are siding with Apple on this issue. Most of the ones on the other side tend to be more left-leaning, although they’re nervous about agreeing with some right-leaning big government enthusiasts.

      1. Regardless of one’s own anecdotal evidence, the reality is this: most of the elected representatives, political interest groups, and candidates for office, that support Apple are Democrats/progressives.

        I see that GOP Senators have suggested a law to penalize companies like Apple for taking a stand like they are. I see progressive groups like the ACLU and Amnesty International side with Apple. It should be note that these groups are usually targets of conservative criticism.

        Again, there are exceptions. But this whole privacy issue is one that has been championed by progressives for a long time, such as when the Patriot Act was pushed through under Bush.

      1. So declares the king of the trolls.

        Love how you toss in your own special loopholes to suit your personal agenda, just like the assholes you elect to represent you in government.

  3. Looks like a little typo in there Alex Abdo, let me fix that for you: If the FBI can force Apple to hack into its customers’ devices, then so too can every other repressive regime in the rest of the world.

    There, much more accurate now.

      1. Ah you are an enchanting poster I do have to say. Last night I read your comment beginning with “Can a government stand against an entire industry?”

        It takes the backbone of integrity, morality, and ethics to be able to stand up, so obviously it can’t stand up against anything. That doesn’t mean it’s not dangerous for it can still slither, crawl and writhe so you still have to watch your step.

        There aren’t many women that post here, and well a while back there was one and she was so, so, so wonderful. It’s probably not you but there is something familiar like a perfume, an aura, the curves of your letters, I don’t know, but I enjoyed that post you made last night.

        Thank you.

  4. Well…well…well…it seems that all of the Republican candidates for president now say that Apple should comply with the government’s request and hack into their own iPhone.

    We already knew that Donald Trump was siding with the government, but now we can add Rubio and Cruz and Carson and Kasich to that list. Both Rubio and Cruz displayed their usual ignorance and said that Apple is not being asked to create a “back door.”

    So no matter who the GOP chooses as their nominee, that person will definitely side with the government against Apple on this case. And of course that means if they get to choose the next Supreme Court justice that this justice will most likely side against Apple in this and other similar cases.

  5. Given that squillions of people in the rest of the world, by which I mean anywhere that isn’t the USA, own iPhones, and might therefore be affected by the ‘backdoor’, should it ever materialise and get shared or stolen, is it not reasonable for all those users to file a global preventative class action against the FBI in advance?

    Maybe here, as a starting place: http://www.icj-cij.org/homepage/

    The FBI pose a threat to all our personal privacy and security, not just to its own citizens!

    1. You bring up an excellent point. Apple sells iPhones across the world. Some of those countries have, shall we say, less progressive governments than we do. To those consumers having a smartphone be secure is even more important than what we might imagine here in the US.

      Apple is trying to protect consumers not only here in the US, but everywhere.

  6. Who’s responsible (morally/financially) for any crimes associated with a govtOS getting out into the wild? Would the government be held responsible or Apple?

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