Google CEO Calls FBI's Request for Apple Backdoor 'A Troubling Precedent'

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by MacRumors, Feb 17, 2016.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot


    Apr 12, 2001

    This morning, Apple CEO Tim Cook published an open letter declaring the company's intention to oppose an order from a U.S. federal judge that would require Apple to give the FBI the tools to bypass the passcode on an iPhone owned by San Bernardino shooter Syed Farook.

    Since then, dozens of government officials, members of the media, and tech company leaders have weighed in on the issue, including Sundar Pichai, Google's CEO. In a series of tweets shared this afternoon, Pichai seemingly sided with Apple, saying the FBI's request to enable a backdoor "could compromise users' privacy."

    He went on to say that while Google understands the challenges law enforcement faces and supports providing access to data based on valid legal orders, that's "wholly different" than ordering companies to "enable hacking of customer devices & data," something he says "could be a troubling precedent."

    As the company behind Android, the other major operating system widely used by smartphone owners, Google's opinion on the issue carries some weight. People have been waiting to see what stance Google would take and whether the company would back Apple. Other tech company CEOs, including those from Twitter and Facebook, have yet to share an opinion, but WhatsApp CEO and founder Jan Koum wrote a strong statement supporting Apple this morning. "We must not allow this dangerous precedent to be set," he penned. "Today our freedom and our liberty is at stake.

    At issue is a U.S. federal judge's order requiring Apple to build a new version of iOS that would disable certain passcode security features on the iPhone in question.

    The FBI wants Apple to eliminate the auto-erase function that wipes an iPhone if the wrong passcode is entered too many times, it wants the delay between wrong passcode inputs removed, and it wants the ability to electronically input a passcode. With the passcode disabling features, the FBI would have the tools to potentially gain brute force access to the shooter's locked iPhone.

    In his open letter, Tim Cook said Apple believes the government's intentions "are good," but such a tool is "too dangerous to create." Such software, "in the wrong hands" could "have the potential to unlock any iPhone in someone's physical possession."
    Under Tim Cook's reign, Apple has taken an unbendable stance on privacy and has urged the United States government to make a stand and support "no backdoors" in encryption. He has repeatedly stated that creating a backdoor for law enforcement also creates a backdoor for "bad guys."

    Note: Due to the political nature of the discussion regarding this topic, the discussion thread is located in our Politics, Religion, Social Issues forum. All forum members and site visitors are welcome to read and follow the thread, but posting is limited to forum members with at least 100 posts.

    Article Link: Google CEO Calls FBI's Request for Apple Backdoor 'A Troubling Precedent'
  2. usarioclave macrumors 65816

    Sep 26, 2003
    Why does Obama want to take away your privacy?
  3. rocknblogger macrumors 68020


    Apr 2, 2011
    New Jersey
    I imagine more tech companies will speak out in support of Apple on this issue.
  4. sualpine macrumors 6502


    May 13, 2013
    At this moment, I have no reason to believe Google would have said no as Apple did.
  5. farewelwilliams macrumors 68000

    Jun 18, 2014
    (2 years later) Apple finally caves.
    FBI gets into the terrorist's iphone and just sees Flappy Bird installed.
  6. duffman9000 macrumors 68000


    Sep 7, 2003
    Deep in the Depths of CA
  7. Andres Cantu macrumors 68030

    Andres Cantu

    May 31, 2015
    Rio Grande Valley in South Texas
  8. DTphonehome macrumors 68000

    Apr 4, 2003
    This is a critical juncture. If Apple yields on this, then there is no telling how far governments (of the United States, or other, more nefarious, governments) will embed themselves into their citizens' electronic lives. We may trust the government's intention this time, but who knows how a future government will use this tool?
  9. Flow39 macrumors 68000


    Sep 7, 2014
    At the Apple Store
    Nice, let's hope Apple holds strong and stands their ground now that Google is with them.
  10. mozumder macrumors 6502a

    Mar 9, 2009
  11. prasand macrumors 6502


    Mar 24, 2015
    UES, New York
    With the specifics on what they want Apple to do, it becomes crystal clear on how readily that would allow others to gain entry into Apple Devices. *sighs*
  12. na1577 macrumors 6502a

    Jan 20, 2008
    I'm grateful that another tech giant like Google has publicly backed Apple. So far the FBI's only supporter seems to be confirmed moron Donald Trump.
  13. logicstudiouser macrumors 6502a


    Feb 4, 2010
    FBI ultimately wants a backdoor to everything, and it shocks me how so many are indifferent about that.
    Why isn't the 4th amendment as passionately protected as the 2nd amendment?
  14. geniusj, Feb 17, 2016
    Last edited: Feb 17, 2016

    geniusj macrumors regular

    Feb 27, 2004
    Sunnyvale, CA
    Well, this isn't quite as bad as it looked when I first saw the headlines. Basically, they want the ability to brute force the passcode. I'm actually surprised that they haven't figured out a way to be able to brute force it already. This seems like a pretty inefficient way to do it too. They'll be bounded by the speed of the phone. You'd think they'd try and get the data itself off of the phone and attempt the brute force using their own systems. It's just an AES block cipher, isn't it?

    Either way, if your password is good enough, even this special build of iOS probably wouldn't matter all that much.
  15. tufts macrumors newbie

    Jul 2, 2014
    If you like your privacy, you can keep it
  16. pat500000 Suspended


    Jun 3, 2015
    Do you think you could answer that?
  17. Kaibelf macrumors 68020


    Apr 29, 2009
    Silicon Valley, CA
    And why is trump also saying it? And several of the others running so far?
  18. SusanK macrumors 68000

    Oct 9, 2012
    CNN was on this evening. As soon as The Donald appeared I switched to Andy Griffith. Wanted someone intelligent like Barney Fife.
  19. gugy macrumors 68040


    Jan 31, 2005
    La Jolla, CA
    Good time for all the tech giants to say no to the FBI and US Government.
  20. ZacNicholson macrumors 6502a


    Jun 25, 2011
  21. Yojimbo007 macrumors 6502a


    Jun 13, 2012
    Ohhhh. Common... Judt shut up...
    Google me too BS.
    Hypocrisy galore.

    Including Snowden .
    Break the law, intrude, steal, reveal , invade all without autorization if it suits him...
    But others should not do it..

    And im not even talking about the right and/or wrong of the encryption issue .. Its not as easy as yes or no.
    Im taking about obnoxious hypocrisy .
  22. MacCubed macrumors 68000


    Apr 26, 2014
    As I said in another thread, what if the government forces Apple to implement a backdoor? Will it be hardware based or software based? If it is hardware based, the perpetrators won't buy the newest iPhone, and stick to an older model, where as the software backdoor would require an update. The perpetrators would probably be smarter than that to update, and stay on an older version of iOS. Then the government would ask Apple to force newer software onto devices. And that would piss a lot of people off.... Even with a backdoor implemented, it would affect other users in different countries besides the US, making others vulnerable to hacking. This should be looked into depth at an international level, not just concerning the US, because millions of other people's privacy is at stake here.

    There is always going to be work arounds, to the locks, and I am glad the tech companies are sticking up for the general consumers rights, not just the small percent of those who are committing these atrocities. It will be interesting what Microsoft does about this.

    Also we can't forget about the numerous android phone manufacturers, that exist in many countries and aren't controlled by the US government
  23. groovyd Suspended


    Jun 24, 2013
    because they are all running for the biggest power trip position in the world and they all want unquestioned access to the minion's private stuff so they can keep us under them once they win. the whole of government is full of narcissists like this. for them to have access to everyone's information has always been a wet dream of theirs.
  24. JHankwitz macrumors 68000

    Oct 31, 2005
    Read "1984" for the answer.
  25. Benjamin Frost macrumors 68020

    Benjamin Frost

    May 9, 2015
    London, England
    Cook's unbendable stance is commendable.

    If only the iPhone were as unbendable.

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