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Is Apple ethically correct to take up this stance or is the government's need more important?

 

 

Apple will contest a court order to help FBI investigators access data on the phone belonging to San Bernardino gunman Syed Rizwan Farook.

The company had been ordered to help the FBI circumvent security software on Farook's iPhone, which the FBI said contained crucial information.

In a statement, Apple chief executive Tim Cook said: "The United States government has demanded that Apple take an unprecedented step which threatens the security of our customers."

 

"We oppose this order, which has implications far beyond the legal case at hand." Read more:

 

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If there is a means for the government to access your phone, then there is a means for anyone to access your phone.

Kept getting a 404 on your link. This one works for me....googled it. Can't see where the difference is in the urls.   http://www.macworld.com/article/3035747/security/proper-device-management-could

Do as I say, not as I do. The next IPhone OS patch is going to be called "Fort Knox".

You need to read Apple's statement - if you have already looked at it read it again critically

 

This is the meat of their argument -


1. They have cooperated in the San Bernadino case

When the FBI has requested data that’s in our possession, we have provided it. Apple complies with valid subpoenas and search warrants, as we have in the San Bernardino case. We have also made Apple engineers available to advise the FBI, and we’ve offered our best ideas on a number of investigative options at their disposal.

 

2. The Powers that be have decided to use this scare of internal terrorism to get what they had before mobiles and hate the fact that they have lost - access. They have been pressurizing the large tech companies in USA to grant them access to your data / contacts / photos / email / browsing whenever they fancy it

 

... But now the U.S. government has asked us for something we simply do not have, and something we consider too dangerous to create. They have asked us to build a backdoor to the iPhone.

 

Specifically, the FBI wants us to make a new version of the iPhone operating system, circumventing several important security features, and install it on an iPhone recovered during the investigation. In the wrong hands, this software — which does not exist today — would have the potential to unlock any iPhone in someone’s physical possession.

 

It is easier and more palatable for Apple to couch the argument in terms of someone else getting hold of the back-door key - but in reality it is worse that the government might have it. And whilst everyone would surely agree the Government would only use this ability once...hang one a sec - no they would use it all the time

 

String - Look at any freedom of expression website in the UK and see who the government has now admitted to wire-tapping, spying on, intercepting mail ... "back in the bad old days". Well they are still at it - but the current stuff is still hidden and won't be released for years - and I for one do not want my government to have an immediate unfettered access to my personal communications.

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One obvious question is do Apple and the FBI know that a 'back door' is even possible without loss of data?

 

That aside, I really do not know what to think about this. On one hand a 'back door' could be a great asset in fighting crime and terrorism. On the other hand, personal private information should remain private. The question is what do we think is more important?

 

Right now I am siding with creation of such a 'back door', but with its use only sanctioned by judges. But how long would it take for such a system to get abused? Or indeed as swansont suggests, fall into private hands for who knows what purpose?

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If there is a means for the government to access your phone, then there is a means for anyone to access your phone.

Yes, it's either bullet-proof or it isn't.

 

You need to read Apple's statement - if you have already looked at it read it again critically

 

This is the meat of their argument -

 

1. They have cooperated in the San Bernadino case

 

 

2. The Powers that be have decided to use this scare of internal terrorism to get what they had before mobiles and hate the fact that they have lost - access. They have been pressurizing the large tech companies in USA to grant them access to your data / contacts / photos / email / browsing whenever they fancy it

 

 

It is easier and more palatable for Apple to couch the argument in terms of someone else getting hold of the back-door key - but in reality it is worse that the government might have it. And whilst everyone would surely agree the Government would only use this ability once...hang one a sec - no they would use it all the time

 

String - Look at any freedom of expression website in the UK and see who the government has now admitted to wire-tapping, spying on, intercepting mail ... "back in the bad old days". Well they are still at it - but the current stuff is still hidden and won't be released for years - and I for one do not want my government to have an immediate unfettered access to my personal communications.

I missed that link! Read it now, cheers. What concerns me is that Teresa May and her US counterparts always say "Terrorism!" but they actually want access to much minor stuff, like social security fraud for example, for which I don't think unfettered access to device/ISP data is a proportional response to the basic loss of an individual's right to privacy.just for stuff like that. It has to be very serious stuff that might cause societal instability or a threat to lives. Each case must be sanctioned by an independent legal authority.

 

At the current time, I think the sophistication of NSA, GCHQ technology and resources vastly outcompetes Islamic State; it's more than enough. I think the focus on the terrorist angle is just a smokescreen for unlimited access to Joe or Josephine Public's data. The more data, even seemingly inocuous, an organisation has, the more profiles it can make the more control it will have... not good.

One obvious question is do Apple and the FBI know that a 'back door' is even possible without loss of data?

The only way for three people to keep a secret is if all of them are dead. We cannot be trusted.

Edited by StringJunky
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I think Apple is behaving the way they should, ethically and legally. This is pure fear and coercive tactics used on a corporation, something many of them break under. Considering corporations already own the media in the US, creating this kind of data access to a major communications component, which in turn gets shared with a currently right wing, extremely hawkish government, I'd say we need more corporations who stand up to the fascistic maneuvering the way Apple has.

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One obvious question is do Apple and the FBI know that a 'back door' is even possible without loss of data?

 

That aside, I really do not know what to think about this. On one hand a 'back door' could be a great asset in fighting crime and terrorism. On the other hand, personal private information should remain private. The question is what do we think is more important?

 

Right now I am siding with creation of such a 'back door', but with its use only sanctioned by judges. But how long would it take for such a system to get abused? Or indeed as swansont suggests, fall into private hands for who knows what purpose?

 

It isn't even a matter of it falling into the wrong hands. Someone could stumble upon the backdoor by chance.

 

Honestly, I am going to take the stance that the back door shouldn't be used. In the case of the shooter, why do they need to get into his phone? They already know he committed the crime. So what help is having access to his phone going to have?

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I think Apple is behaving the way they should, ethically and legally. This is pure fear and coercive tactics used on a corporation, something many of them break under. Considering corporations already own the media in the US, creating this kind of data access to a major communications component, which in turn gets shared with a currently right wing, extremely hawkish government, I'd say we need more corporations who stand up to the fascistic maneuvering the way Apple has.

Yes, as the electorate, we need to make sure that Apple et al don't get stuck between a rock and a hard place by the security services. I think they might have to go to court to bring it out into the open, so that everyone is listening and judging the situation. When I say 'we' I mean the European and US population..... we have common cause for concern because all the services are .snooping each other AND up each others arses at the same time.

Edited by StringJunky
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In the case of the shooter, why do they need to get into his phone? They already know he committed the crime. So what help is having access to his phone going to have?

The FBI must have approached the courts with some argument about this. I assume they are hunting for links with potential terrorists and terrorist organisations. That is if this particular incident is terrorism and not just one of the more plain and ordinary mass shooting the US seems to love.

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One obvious question is do Apple and the FBI know that a 'back door' is even possible without loss of data?

 

That aside, I really do not know what to think about this. On one hand a 'back door' could be a great asset in fighting crime and terrorism. On the other hand, personal private information should remain private. The question is what do we think is more important?

 

Right now I am siding with creation of such a 'back door', but with its use only sanctioned by judges. But how long would it take for such a system to get abused? Or indeed as swansont suggests, fall into private hands for who knows what purpose?

Dude, that's called deep web insertion, get a Tor browser and some hacking skillz and it's easier than pi.

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Better to address the cause than try and treat the symptoms.

True, True. Judge sanctioned backdoor access is scary, but a team of elite, government sanctioned, hackers looking to chew through every bit of your information is scarier. I side with Ajb.

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There are other legal implications involved. For example, I work for a bank. Some of our employees carry iPhones for work,issued by the company. These phones are used to access private systems within the company that contain bank records, customer information, etc. Providing a universal back door into iPhones compromises all the security of any system that phone can connect to.

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There are other legal implications involved. For example, I work for a bank. Some of our employees carry iPhones for work,issued by the company. These phones are used to access private systems within the company that contain bank records, customer information, etc. Providing a universal back door into iPhones compromises all the security of any system that phone can connect to.

*Opens Back door to all phones* *Evil Genius Samuel Jackson from Kingsman (Haven't seen it) drains the bank accounts of everyone in the US* *Laughs wildly* That's the news headline we'd see if this backdoor thing went through.

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It occurs to me that this would not be an issue if law enforcement had been able to use a fingerprint to unlock the phone (if that was enabled) before that option expired. I thought this was a 5S, but I've also seen 5C. Not sure if that has fingerprint-reading capability.

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It occurs to me that this would not be an issue if law enforcement had been able to use a fingerprint to unlock the phone (if that was enabled) before that option expired. I thought this was a 5S, but I've also seen 5C. Not sure if that has fingerprint-reading capability.

Remind me to never use biometrics as security.

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Does the right to privacy have to be 100% sacrosanct?

 

Since when has that been the case? In what other area of life has the right to privacy been completely over riding?

 

Have there not always been justifications for invasions of privacy in particular circumstances?

 

And is this not the first time in human history where anyone could be confident that their (distant) communications have zero chance of being intercepted?

 

I feel very at risk (not personally) knowing that this is now the case (if it is and there are not other . places along the chain of communication that the security forces can intercept messages).

Edited by geordief
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...Have there not always been justifications for invasions of privacy in particular circumstances?

I think the operative word is 'particular', which I don't think we here disagree with. The problem and concern is that we are entering into a new phase where the governments want free access to everything, on a whim. The notion that if you aren't doing anything wrong you have nothing to fear is complete bollocks. There are elements of people's lives that I think they have a fundamental right to keep private from routine governmental surveillance

Edited by StringJunky
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I think the operative word is 'particular', which I don't think we here disagree with. The problem and concern is that we are entering into a new phase where the governments want free access to everything, on a whim. The notion that if you aren't doing anything wrong you have nothing to fear is complete bollocks. There are elements of people's lives that I think they have a fundamental right to keep private from routine governmental surveillance

You don't think that this case is "on a whim" do you? Has the FBI not had to go through a court order in this case ?( well I assume they must , I don't actually know).

 

Then again , there could be pressing/emergency cases where the security forces might ( with my approval :) ) go ahead with the "search" and apply for the court order at the same time.

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Does the right to privacy have to be 100% sacrosanct?

 

Since when has that been the case? In what other area of life has the right to privacy been completely over riding?

 

 

That's moot, since this is not the issue. This is about having no privacy whatsoever, because the government now has the master key that opens every door.

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The issue isn't that Apple wouldn't help them get into this particular phone. The issue is that they want Apple to provide a way for them to break into any iPhone they want at any time they feel like it.

Edited by Greg H.
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You don't think that this case is "on a whim" do you? Has the FBI not had to go through a court order in this case ?( well I assume they must , I don't actually know).

 

Then again , there could be pressing/emergency cases where the security forces might ( with my approval :) ) go ahead with the "search" and apply for the court order at the same time.

I posted the OP as a general principle, not that specific case really. I've not considered that there's actually potentially two avenues of dialogue here: the application of encryption and government access when needed, subsequently compromising overall security, which is what the article is about, and also, how much freedom should a government have to randomly access personal data; unfettered trawling of anything and everything, in effect.

Edited by StringJunky
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Has the industry designed software with the aim of preventing case by case "break ins"?(my suspicion without competence to answer) Can't they design a system that allows the security services/ court system to "break in " on a case by case basis?

 

Is Apple et al trying to box the "privacy invaders" (for want of a better term) into a corner so that if they want restricted access in a particular instance ,they can counter by saying that is an "appalling vista" where everyone suddenly stands naked?

 

Is this shadow boxing?(economic and political propaganda)


I posted the OP as a general principle, not that specific case really. I've not considered that there's actually potentially two avenues of dialogue here: the application of encryption and government access when needed, subsequently compromising overall security, which is what the article is about, and also, how much freedom should a government have to randomly access personal data; unfettered trawling of anything and everything, in effect.

Doesn't this case show up the situation into stark relief? Like you (I think) I think we need a middle way . It looks to me like Apple's way is "my way or the highway" (hope I am wrong)

Edited by geordief
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Has the industry designed software with the aim of preventing case by case "break ins"?(my suspicion without competence to answer) Can't they design a system that allows the security services/ court system to "break in " on a case by case basis?

 

Is Apple et al trying to box the "privacy invaders" (for want of a better term) into a corner so that if they want restricted access in a particular instance ,they can counter by saying that is an "appalling vista" where everyone suddenly stands naked?

 

Is this shadow boxing?(economic and political propaganda)

Doesn't this case show up the situation into stark relief? Like you (I think) I think we need a middle way . It looks to me like Apple's way is "my way or the highway" (hope I am wrong)

Let's be pragmatic and look at the real world eficacy of the current state-of-the-art in cyber security: are the NSA, and other critical agencies systems getting hacked? Yes, on regular basis it seems, because so many people, legitamately need access to departmental information. What this tells us is that a single chink in cyber security armour WILL be exploited. It has to be all or nothing for best peace of mind. Let's face it, how many stories have you read of adolescent computer nerds breaking into the systems of large organisations? They devote millions to protecting their information.

Edited by StringJunky
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