Apple to A.G. Barr: No, we won’t unlock the Pensacola terrorist’s iPhones

iPhone passcode lock screen
iPhone passcode lock screen

Earlier today U.S. Attorney General William Barr called on Apple to unlock the alleged iPhones of the Islamic terrorist who murdered three people and injured eight others on a Naval base in Pensacola, Florida in December. Apple has responded.

Joshua Topolsky and Raymond Wong for Input:

“We reject the characterization that Apple has not provided substantive assistance in the Pensacola investigation,” the company said. “It was not until January 8th that we received a subpoena for information related to the second iPhone, which we responded to within hours,” Apple added countering Barr’s characterization of Apple being slow on its approach to the FBI’s needs. However, it ends the statement in no uncertain terms: “We have always maintained there is no such thing as a backdoor just for the good guys.”

Apple sent its strongly worded statement on Barr to Input, which you can read in its entirety [here].

MacDailyNews Take: Again, Founding Father Ben Franklin said it best:

Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety. – Benjamin Franklin, Historical Review of Pennsylvania, 1759

Why don’t these genius politicians next attempt to legislate in purple unicorns? They’re equally as plentiful as secure backdoors.MacDailyNews, October 3, 2018

This is not about this phone. This is about the future. And so I do see it as a precedent that should not be done in this country or in any country. This is about civil liberties and is about people’s abilities to protect themselves. If we take encryption away… the only people that would be affected are the good people, not the bad people. Apple doesn’t own encryption. Encryption is readily available in every country in the world, as a matter of fact, the U.S. government sponsors and funds encryption in many cases. And so, if we limit it in some way, the people that we’ll hurt are the good people, not the bad people; they will find it anyway. — Apple CEO Tim Cook, February 2016


  1. “If we limit it in some way, the people that we’ll hurt are the good people, not the bad people; they will find it anyway.” — Apple CEO Tim Cook

    I wonder if Mr. Squirt Gun Emoji understands that he’s a Second Amendment gun rights backer?

    1. I wonder if Mr Risible Sociopath Homophobe will ever give credit where credit is due. Tim Cook has nailed his and Apple’s colours to the mast in a very public manner, for which he deserves rich applause.
      How about it?

  2. If Apple is forced to make a backdoor for the US, what keeps Russia or China from demanding the same access?

    And how many times have criminals obtained hacking tools from government agencies that were supposed to have secured them?

    And given that you can load any of the multitude of publicly-available encryption programs on your Android device, wouldn’t terrorists use those instead?

    If Apple is strong-armed into creating a backdoor, all this does is make things a trivially bit more difficult for the Bad Guys while opening up one BILLION more devices to malware, spying, extortion and more.

    Barr’s disinenguous crocodile tears sway me not a whit.

    1. Yes, exactly. How was information obtained BEFORE the age of cell phones? If a door could be made, the bad guys will find it. The gov’t saying ” we will protect the “door” is worthless. How many times has a gov’t agency’s data been hacked? One could argue that communication over a cell phone could be construed as “executive privilege”. Ask the NSA, even though they are not supposed to spy on Americans, they do. Maybe they know to whom the terrorist was talking-HA.

    1. It may be your data, but it is on Apple’s servers. Possession of child pornography is a major felony because those who purchase the material are financing human trafficking and sexual exploitation. For obvious reasons, the law does not require proof that the party in possession actually knew that the material was illegal. It is enough to prove that a reasonable party would have recognized the unacceptable risk that it might be illegal. Once possession is proven, the burden of disproving negligence effectively shifts to the defendant.

      Would you like to assume that risk for material a third party puts on your servers? Neither does Apple.

      1. And does Apple have probable cause and a warrant? Are they law enforcement? If we would not accept the government going though our hard drives, why would we let Apple go through our cloud drives?

        Yes, it’s their servers, for which they received payment, either direct or derivative. I would also not hold them accountable.

          1. How dare you accuse me of having Kiddy porn. Up yours!

            You can certainly suggest what I use, but I yours!

            You can trust Apple, but you cannot impose that trust on others. Up yours!

            No company should be able to violate the 4the amendment. Really up yours.

    2. If you don’t want Apple to find your child porn, move it to a different hosting solution. It’ll be a pain to maintain two libraries, but wouldn’t you prefer that to being in jail?

      My personal solution to this problem is to not have pictures of naked children on my iPhone, no matter how cute some people seem to think such images are.

          1. This is what happens when you’re an IT department. It cuts both ways. Law enforcement is government led, not company led.

            And wire taps, cavity searches, blood test, house searches, etc. have always been properly legal WITH a warrant. Touch my iPhone however…. oh noze!

  3. Don’t all recent models of the iPhone unlock with either your face or fingerprint? If so, and the terrorist was killed in the attack, why didn’t they use one of those methods to unlock the phones at that time?

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