“Another amicus brief has been filed in support of Apple in its legal battle with the FBI over the measures it is being ordered, by a court writ, to take to help the agency break into a locked iPhone used by one of the San Bernardino terrorists,” Natasha Lomas reports for TechCrunch. “Apple is keeping an update[d] list of amicus briefs and letters of support filed with the court here.”
“This time the amicus brief has been submitted by Lavabit, a technology company that previously judged it necessary to shutter its own service after receiving similarly ‘extraordinary’ government demands for assistance to access user data, in the wake of the 2013 disclosures by NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden,” Lomas reports. “The former encrypted email service had apparently been used by Snowden for private email communications but shut down its services in August 2013 to avoid being forced to compromise user data, with founder Ladar Levison saying at the time: ‘I would _strongly_ recommend against anyone trusting their private data to a company with physical ties to the United States.'”
“In its amicus brief in support of Apple, published on Friday,” Lomas reports, “Lavabit also warns the FBI’s action against Apple could ultimately trigger an exodus of US companies seeking to avoid similar reputational damage. ‘Such precedence would likely result in many businesses moving their operations offshore, therefore, making it more difficult for law enforcement to obtain even ordinary assistance from such companies,’ it writes in the brief.”
Read more in the full article here.
MacDailyNews Take: Wouldn’t it be cool if Apple purchased an island from some debt-ridden country (plenty of those to choose from) and turned it into their own tax-free nation or at least moved to a country that respected privacy rights and had a sane level of taxation, at least? Of course, things could always change with the latter move, but with the admittedly fantastical and impractical former move, Apple would be truly free of an increasingly hostile U.S. government.
Lavabit’s full amicus brief – recommended – is here.