Apple Files Its Response To Court Order. Refuses FBI Request To Create 'GovtOS'
Apple filed a motion asking a judge to dismiss a court order requiring the company to unlock the San Bernardino shooter's iPhone at the FBI's request. The fight between FBI and Apple over the encrypted iPhone has divided celebrities, companies, and citizens. Recent polls indicate the public was divided between their support for Apple and FBI. Tech companies are also divided in their support for Apple with companies like Google, Facebook, Twitter and WhatsApp has gave public support for Apple, while Microsoft's cofounder Bill Gates supports FBI.
Most of Apple's arguments are probably familiar to everyone by now but, almost amusingly, different parts of the US government are making it easier for Apple to make its case. While the FBI insists that this case will be limited to one and only one iPhone, lawmakers and government officials are already expressing their intent to force Apple to do the same for dozens, sometimes hundreds, of iPhones under their jurisdiction.
In its motion, Apple accused FBI for asking them to create "GovtOS" which the company likened to "Cancer". Apple believes once an insecure version of iOS, even a single one, was made, it would only be a matter of time before it falls into the hands of the very criminal that the US government is fighting. In addition, Apple claims that the court order do not have any legal ground to force them to create an OS to decrypt the content of their devices.
Apple also reiterates that the FBI made the mistake of changing the device's iCloud password and this blunder has effectively removed the possibility of getting the needed data without going through this legal and technical circus.
Apple argues that the Congress should be tasked with determining the fate of the shooter's iPhone, not the courts. Earlier, the House Judiciary Committee announced that it will be holding a congressional hearing on encryption on Tuesday, March 1, 2016. The hearing is called, "The Encryption Tightrope: Balancing Americans' Security and Privacy". According to experts, this case could take millions of possible courses and it will take many months, if not years, before ending in Supreme Court. Meanwhile, Apple is working on strengthening the encryption in their devices, so that the company can no longer decrypt any data stored in them.