Google follows Whatsapp to side with Apple in FBI encryption tussle

Google has sided with arch-rivals Apple in its encryption stand-off with the FBI after the government agency demanded it build a ‘master key’ for the iPhone to allow it to access encrypted data.

The show of support came from CEO Sundar Pichai, doubtless mindful of the precedent it could set for his own Android operating system, who warned that a judge’s order demanding that Apple do more to assist the FBI amounted to a ‘dangerous precedent’.

Taking to Twitter to share his sentiments Pichai wrote: "We build secure products to keep your information safe and we give law enforcement access to data based on valid legal orders. But that's wholly different than requiring companies to enable hacking of customer devices and data.

“Forcing companies to enable hacking could compromise users’ privacy."

Apple has already won moral support from Facebook-owned Whatsapp over the issue as it seeks to stand firm to its principles in a philosophical debate over how far technology giants should go to support criminal investigations.