Apple privacy battle with Washington looms as watershed moment

“Apple’s fight with the FBI over hacking into the San Bernardino shooter’s iPhone has exposed an unresolved tension between the law and digital technology that has been building towards this flashpoint for decades,” Tim Bradshaw, Lindsay Fortado, and Geoff Dyer report for The Financial Times. “”

“To some, we live in a ‘golden age of surveillance.’ Digital technologies have created an explosion in communication that is far easier for law enforcement agencies to trawl than traditional telephone calls or other offline methods,” Bradshaw, Fortado, and Dyer report. “Over the past 30 years, successive pieces of legislation have given US investigators extensive powers with which to tap technology and telecoms companies for suspects’ data.”

Bradshaw, Fortado, and Dyer report, “At the same time, an explosion of personal data, much of which is stored in a single device — the smartphone — has driven tech companies such as Apple and Google to build new kinds of security into their products to protect users’ bank details, messages and intimate photos.”

MacDailyNews Take: Let’s get real: Google’s me-too promise of encryption will take several years to roll out to a significant number of fragmandroid sufferers.

Android 5.0 and 5.0 only comprise 35.3% of Android devices. The percentage of those are encrypted by default is far less than even that due to significant performance issues. Android 6.0, with full-disk encryption on by default, is only running 1.2% of Android devices!

94% of Apple’s iOS devices are encrypted.

In other words, stop trying to equate Android with iOS by including Google’s efforts with Apple’s. Android is a bad joke, as usual.

“In the process, they have made it much harder for law enforcement to listen in, leading many in the intelligence community to become increasingly agitated that criminals and terrorists are “going dark” using encryption,” Bradshaw, Fortado, and Dyer report. “Now the battle over the iPhone of a dead killer has become a line in the sand for both sides.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Hopefully, liberty prevails.

In Republican debate, candidates back U.S. government over Apple – February 26, 2016
Donald Trump calls for Apple boycott over San Bernardino terrorist iPhone encryption – February 19, 2016
Obama administration: We’re only demanding Apple hack just one iPhone – February 17, 2016
Apple CEO Tim Cook lashes out at Obama administration over encryption, bemoans White House lack of leadership – January 13, 2016
Obama administration wants access to smartphones – December 15, 2015
Hillary Clinton wants a ‘Manhattan Project’ to cure encryption; Snowden, Andreessen mock – December 21, 2015
Obama administration’s calls for backdoors into encrypted communications echo Clinton-era key escrow fiasco – December 14, 2015
Eric Schmidt-backed startup stealthily working to put Hillary Clinton in the White House – October 9, 2015
Obama administration war against Apple just got uglier – July 31, 2015


  1. The ‘intelligence’ community (FBI?) claims that the iPhone has become the phone of choice for terrorists. However, wasn’t the iPhone found in possession of the San Bernardino shooters issued to them by our gov’t? Wouldn’t that make our gov’t the terrorist? And weren’t the two smashed personal phones Android phones, or is the FBI not saying?

    Inquiring minds want to know.

  2. Superior and perhaps unbreakable encryption is an inevitability and unstoppable by legislation. They should get used to it and develop other investigative tools. Of course, thinking outside the box, especially a technological box, is not the strong suit of very many people.

    1. “Superior and perhaps unbreakable encryption is an inevitability…”

      Publicly available, super high grade encryption already exists, and has been around for a long time.

      And any of these terrorists and criminals of a level that matter are operating with it, or are on the Deep Web.

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