Apple’s Tim Cook on FBI fight: ‘No one’s going dark’

“Apple CEO Tim Cook makes his case for why his company doesn’t want to help the FBI unlock San Bernardino killer Syed Farook’s iPhone in a new extended interview with TIME Magazine — and says the government is trying to set a precedent it can use across the country,” Matthew DeLuca reports for NBC News.

“In the new interview, Cook fires back at government claims that, unless investigators can break locked iPhones and bypass encryption, criminals and terrorists are going to be able to hide from the law — a problem the government refers to as ‘going dark,'” DeLuca reports. “‘Going dark — this is a crock,” Cook told TIME. ‘I mean really, it’s fair to say that if you send me a message and it’s encrypted, they can’t get that without going to you or to me, unless one of us has it in our cloud at this point. But we shouldn’t all be fixated just on what’s not available. We should take a step back and look at the total that’s available, because there’s a mountain of information about us.'”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Most people who use online services would be shocked at how little privacy they have left.

SEE ALSO:
Harvard Law professor and former Obama special assistant dismisses FBI’s claims
Apple: The law already exists that protects us from U.S. government demands to hack iPhone – February 26, 2016

19 Comments

    1. I wish you guys and you pro-Apple Americans would stop just for an hour or two and look it this objectively and read the evidentiary record and other case law.

      What Tim Cook is saying here is embarassing. He’s oversimplifying this.

      1. Cook says the government is trying to set a precedent here. Really? Well, so WHAT Tim. You mean a company or organization might have an agenda? You mean Apple is the only one who can have an agenda and nobody else can? What is wrong with the precedent Tim? Tim, you’re not a lawyer. You’re not an expert in national security. You don’t have the security clearances and disclosures to be aware of the threats to national security. You’re not a policy maker. You provide rhetoric with little to support your comments. Tim Cook says the government is trying to set a precedent but doesn’t go into any detail why this would be bad. Hard evidence with correlative data, etc.
      2. Cook fails to recognize and understand the importance of evidence and collecting evidence in an investigation. You don’t cherry pick this Cook. You gather as much evidence as you can. Just because information about us may be located elsewhere doesn’t mean it is. And it doesn’t mean it will have any probabtive value in a legal setting. And it doesn’t mean that information on an iPhone is located elsewhere either.

      Cook paints a broad brush and fails to consider the importance of access to evidence and the cooperation of third parties in an investigation.

      Tim, would you agree to the Court Order at bar if 20,000 Americans were killed? 50,000? 200,000? Would you agree that YOU are trying to set a legal precedent that then all other companies in the US could use, just like you? And would you not have to agree that your precedent would insulate criminals… A prisoner in a max security US prison said iOS was like a gift from god in terms of law enforcement being locked out.

      Tim Cook, if a terrorist attack happened against Apple headquarters and 10,000 employees were killed, and trade secrets and unreleased products stolen, and you found a few iPhones belonging to the terrorists on campus after the attack, would you provide for the u locking of the phone then?

      Remember when Apple sent Apple black coats to that guy from Gizmodo’s apartment looking for information. And how Apple was behind the search and seizure warrant and police ransacked his apartment?

      When it suits Apple, it’s cool. When it doesn’t, it’s not cool. Do us all a favour Tim, and shut up and get back to work.

      1. dswe, Thank you for some counterbalance on this forum.

        I support Apple in this fight, but everything you wrote makes sense. Too many pro Apple people fail to appreciate what it likes to work in law enforcement or security, don’t understand the way the law works, etc.

        We have 2 competing interests with radically different perspectives in this case. On the side of the government, we have people charged with protecting the lives of the entire US population. Many of these people have access to information regarding security threats that we can never have. They have enormous pressure on them, because they cannot afford to let one terrorist attack through. They have to bat 1000.

        On the other side, we have a technology company, which is charged with producing the best consumer devices possible. A big part of that is giving their customers the assurance of security and privacy when using these devices.

        Neither side is wrong; both have their points. That is what democracy is all about: working through where we draw the lines. And make no mistake: we draw lines and accept compromises in every other aspect of our lives. The President is correct when cautioning us against absolutism.

        1. Fair enough, wade. But that does not make dswe or his fearmongering post right. I stand by my response.

          Not long ago someone at work said that I would feel differently if my family were the victims of a terrorist attack. They were surprised when I responded “no.” I said that I would feel very sad and angry, and I would do my best to seek revenge on the perpetrators. But I would rather that my family died ina free country than live in a “1984” country. I stand by that assertion.

      2. And just because the FBI thinks that there might be information on the phone, doesn’t mean that it’s there either.

        It’s not Apple that’s trying to set a precedent, it’s the FBI. And it’s no small precedent.

        You forget that there has ALWAYS been a tension between the law enforcement activities and the privacy of individuals. The Constitution and long-held jurisprudence have wisely leaned on the side of privacy because of the potential for the government and bad actors to prey upon the public.

        That is the problem with our public policy today. The government creates a bad situation because of political correctness and bad ideology, and then tries to make everyone pay the price for its error.

        Islam’s ideology that has open-ended instructions on violence is the problem. The Imams who preach violence and aggressive jihad quote the Qu’ran and the Hadith correctly. And there is 1,200 years of consistent theological interpretation on that point.

      3. No dswe, Tim Cook is *not* trying to set a legal precedent. Neither is Apple because, as you are well aware, the U.S. Government is the one that filed the lawsuit. Apple is simply defending its position. So your argument absolutely fails on that count.

        Then you start throwing out large numbers of theoretical deaths that might result from Apple’s refusal to weaken the security of iOS. But even if Apple were to weaken the security of iOS, there is no guarantee that these theoretical disasters will be avoided. If Apple is forced to capitulate to government demands, then sophisticated criminals – the kind that would be a capable of masterminding a major terrorist attack – will find other means to communicate securely. They have probably already hacked into our military satellites, anyway.

        Besides, there are some ideals which are worth accepting great risk, even death, to protect. Our ancestors understood that, and we intend to maintain thst legacy of spirit and commitment.

  1. The serious criminals and terrorists are already dark. They are not going to be uncovered by being able to monitor the whole population of the country.

    Remember just a few years ago when they criticized the “lack of security” on the iPhone? How many cartel bosses and terrorists masterminds were caught during that period by accessing iPhones – or other phones? And similarly by the NSA’s monitoring of everyone. Three hundred? A thousand? Nope. More likely zero, or close to.

    1. Actually, that number is quite higher than zero. These kinds of things don’t really make national news, for quite obvious reasons. But digital surveillance has certainly been very helpful to the intelligence and law enforcement.

      1. Specifically, we are talking about being able to break into any phone to get the information stored there. How many? Not including monitoring specfic phone calls in transmission, bugging in various ways, and whatever else they do.

        You say “quite higher”… how much higher… for stored information on phones, only?

        1. I remember reading that the number is in the hundreds. At least that’s the number of cases where Apple was asked to extract data from a phone, and complied. That’s in addition to all other brands (LG, Samsung, HTC, etc).

          iOS 9 changed that because data is now completely encrypted and Apple doesn’t have the key. But that’s only last six months.

    1. You know, I’ve been thinking…(always a frowny thing with Big Red)…if a businessman with no political experience can win votes and advance in the Presidential primaries the way Donald Trump has done, why not an ex-CEO of a silicon valley firm like Tim Cook? It’s been done before, with job destroyers like Carly Fiorina, but Cook is a success by everyone’s standards except a certain JM and a handful of insincere analysts. And after eight years of a Trump presidency, what’s left of the country might appreciate a leader who thinks different, is calm and deliberate, makes speeches that don’t need to be redacted…and is on record as defending the very civil liberties that continued to erode under The Donald and his malicious puppet show, AKA the Congress of the United States. He wouldn’t even be the first gay President, should he win. Abraham Lincoln’s predecessor, James Buchanan, was first.

      1. I can’t imagine Tim Cook would ever want to compromise his own integrity by running for office.

        Let us not forget; a gay man in the White House? Who will choose the curtains…?

        Not for another 230 years.

  2. I remember talking to a LEO once, and he said “When I see somebody, in my eyes, they are guilty, now I just have to figure out of what” and that is the way the f1i looks at all Americans. They will never admit it, but it true.

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