US DOJ Says Apple's Court Opposition is a 'Diversion,' and the Fear is 'Overblown'; Apple Responds

Discussion in 'Apple iPad News' started by dgstorm, Mar 11, 2016.

  1. dgstorm

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    The latest development in the ongoing feud between the United States Department of Justice (specifically started by the FBI) and Apple, just ratcheted up the inflammatory rhetoric. The DOJ responded to Apple's recent court filing in which Apple is attempting to vacate the FBI's order to open the San Bernardino iPhone.

    The prosecutors representing the United States government called Apple's stance a "diversion," and claimed that Apple's fear of was "overblown." They also said that Apple's perspective was false and "corrosive of the very institutions that are best able to safeguard our liberty and our rights."

    The DOJ doubled-down on their use of the All Writs Act to give them the authority to make this demand from Apple. Furthermore, the Government accuses Apple of "deliberately" raising technological barriers preventing the government from obtaining the data on the iPhone through a lawful warrant. The court document said, "Apple alone can remove those barriers so the FBI can search the phone, and it can do so without undue burden."

    They also pointed out that Apple is "one of the richest and most tech-savvy companies in the world," and claimed that Apple is "more than able to comply with the AWA order." What's particularly egregious in the document is that the DOJ makes two contradictory arguments. On one hand, the DOJ reiterates their claims that this isn't about a "master key," and that this is simply about the one iPhone they need unlocked, even suggesting that there is no evidence a narrow order would apply to other devices in the future; however, they turn right around and contradict themselves by stating, if it does, Apple is "more than able to comply with a large volume of law-enforcement requests."

    Of course, Apple's legal chief Bruce Sewell, responded by speaking with reporters. He seemed almost shocked by the DOJ's legal brief. Sewell called it a "cheap shot" and said that the brief's tone "reads like an indictment." Here's a further quote from Sewell's statement,

    "In 30 years of practice I don't think I've seen a legal brief that was more intended to smear the other side with false accusations and innuendo, and less intended to focus on the real merits of the case. [...]

    We add security features to protect our customers from hackers and criminals. And the FBI should be supporting us in this because it keeps everyone safe. To suggest otherwise is demeaning. It cheapens the debate and it tries to mask the real and serious issues. I can only conclude that the DoJ is so desperate at this point that it has thrown all decorum to the winds...."

    What do you folks think? Did the Department of Justice go too far in vilifying Apple with such harsh legal language?
     
    #1 dgstorm, Mar 11, 2016
    Last edited: Mar 11, 2016
  2. scifan57

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    I think the main purpose of this brief from DOJ is to turn public opinion away from Apple. They're trying to win the case in the court of public opinion instead of through the proper legal channels. If their stand was as legitimate as they would have us believe, there would be no need for the underhanded attempts to circumvent proper legal procedures.
     
  3. dgstorm

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    Agreed. In fact, if the DOJ's position was so rock solid, then they wouldn't even need to make such harsh statements. It would simply be obvious that they were in the right.

    In this instance, the opposite seems obvious... they are overreaching to gain a tiny bit of unauthorized judicial power.
     
  4. scifan57

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    Also, considering the care the terrorists took to destroy their personal iPhones and the hard drive from their computer, it's very likely that the iPhone that the FBI wants Apple to help unlock contains absolutely no useful information. If it did, it would have been destroyed by them like their other iPhones.
     
  5. ardchoille

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    The FBI doesn't actually want access to the iPhone from the San Bernardino incident. What they want is unfettered access to all iPhones, including yours and mine, for eternity and they're using the San Bernardino incident as a means to that end.
     
  6. ardchoille

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    If I were Apple, and was required to create the unlock tool, I would release a new version of iOS the day after the unlock tool was released. This new iOS version would include changes to security that would render the unlock tool useless. This would give the FBI access to the San Bernardino iPhone but block their access to future iPhones. The goal here is to give the FBI what they allegedly want but will eventually expose the FBI's true, hidden, agenda when they complain that they cannot access new iPhones.
     
  7. scifan57

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    The FBI can't even get it's story straight. In one breath they insist it's only about the one particular iPhone. In the next breath they're talking about other iPhones they want unlocked.
     
  8. twerppoet

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    Actually, if I remember right, iOS 9 is already proof against the method the FBi want's Apple to use against the San Bernardino phone (iOS 8). The issue here isn't whether Apple can help the FBI get the information, but whether Apple is required to write an exploit against their own security. Because if they are, then they can be ordered to break iOS 9, and any future OS verison that the FBI (or other law enforcement office) decides they want to crack.

    Essentialy it opens the door for law enforcement to force any company to write software exploits against their own security; and the idea that these exploits will somehow never be leaked and/or used against law abiding citizens is a pipe dream.

    Could Apple do this one-time expoit. Probalby, but if the FBI and law enforcement in general has their way this won't be one time. It will be business as usual, and there is no way that's not going to end up in the hands of criminals and spys.

    And then there is the small step it takes towards America becomeing a police state. Anytime government or law enforcement brays about making you safer, ask what you are giving up; because letting someone else protect you means given them power over you. Make sure the tradeoff is worth it.
     
  9. scifan57

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    A big problem is that people and organizations with power are always looking for ways to increase that power. If that power isn't given to them, they'll find ways to take it. The consequences of their actions are not something that concerns them.
     
  10. scifan57

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