Apple invokes founding fathers in escalating war of words with FBI over encryption

Apple has resorted to invoking the US founding fathers in its ongoing tussle with the FBI to prevent it from being steamrollered into relaxing its encryption technology to allow government officials to read the phones of criminals and terrorists.

The latest exchange saw Apple say that the founding fathers would be ‘appalled’ at the department of justice request to unlock an encrypted iPhone, its last throw of the dice ahead of a courtroom battle to overturn an FBI court order next week.

That mandates that Apple write new software to disable password protection on the phone of terrorist Rizwan Farook following a shooting spree in San Bernardino.

A justice department spokeswoman said: “As we have said in our filings, the Constitution and the three branches of the federal government should be entrusted to strike the balance between each citizen's right to privacy and all citizens' right to safety and justice.”

Apple fiercely contests FBI accusations that its stance is a ‘marketing strategy’ with senior director Robert Ferrini countering that of 1,800 adverts published since 20114 not one has not one has trumpeted its software’s ability to block officials from accessing data.

Join us, it's free.

Become a member to get access to:

  • Exclusive Content
  • Daily and specialised newsletters
  • Research and analysis

Join us, it’s free.

Want to read this article and others just like it? All you need to do is become a member of The Drum. Basic membership is quick, free and you will be able to receive daily news updates.