News / USA

    Apple Accuses US Government of 'Smear' Campaign

    Bruce Sewell, senior VP and general counsel for Apple, testifies on encryption during a hearing on Capitol Hill, Washington, March 1, 2016. The face-off started after Apple refused to comply with a court order to unlock an iPhone beonging to a California mass shooter.
    Bruce Sewell, senior VP and general counsel for Apple, testifies on encryption during a hearing on Capitol Hill, Washington, March 1, 2016. The face-off started after Apple refused to comply with a court order to unlock an iPhone beonging to a California mass shooter.
    VOA News

    Apple has accused the U.S. federal government of intending to 'smear' it as the fight over whether it can be forced to help law enforcement access the iPhone owned by San Bernardino gunman Rizwan Farook goes on.

    "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," said Apple's General Counsel Bruce Sewell in a phone call with reporters on Thursday.

    Sewell disputed government accusations that Apple deliberately made changes to block law enforcement's requests for access, saying the claims were an "unsupported, unsubstantiated effort to vilify Apple rather than confront the issues in the case."

    The government, in its filing, cited news reports and other sources suggesting that by making changes to the iPhone to support Chinese broadband requirements, such as storing data on China's state-owned Telecom equipment, Apple had cooperated with Chinese authorities possibly facilitating state surveillance.

    "Of course that is not true, and the speculation is based on no substance at all," Sewell said in response. "To do this in a brief before a magistrate judge just shows the desperation that the Department of Justice now feels."

    Investigators are asking a federal judge to order Apple to write new software that would help unlock the iPhone used by Farook, one of the shooters who killed 14 people in San Bernardino, California, last December.

    Apple has refused the request saying the security features provide privacy to its customers by protecting them from hackers and criminals.

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    Comments
         
    by: Marcus Aurelius II from: NJ USA
    March 11, 2016 8:13 PM
    Apple Computer's executives should be held in contempt of court and kept in prison until they agree to unlock the terrorist phone so the FBI can find out if there are any leads to other terrorists. If they fail to comply and it turns out another terrorist attack could have been prevented, the victims and their families should sue Apple Computer.

    Personally I think if Apple Computer stalls much longer, it should be taken over by the government and liquidated. Aiding and abetting America's enemies is a crime we call treason. Apple is a corporate criminal IMO.
    In Response

    by: Rational Person from: Texas US
    March 11, 2016 11:38 PM
    So unlocking a terrorists Iphone is worth the millions of people being put at risk because of the newly invented security measures that would potentially weaken apple products? Uh no thanks. Yeah I am against terrorism and want it to be stopped, but what the Government is asking for is so dangerous that if a backdoor was installed on apple products, millions of people, MILLIONS, would fall victim to the Governments snooping ways and hunger for power and mass surveillance. If a backdoor is created, people can replicate its code to cause harm not only to apple products but to encryption in its true form. Without encryption the internet would cease to exist because of malware and viruses, just remember this next time you login to Gmail or Youtube, the reason you are able to do so without trouble is because those sites are encrypted which protect your data from being stolen/deciphered.
    In Response

    by: Cong Nguyen from: Hanoi
    March 11, 2016 10:42 PM
    It sound like someone "should be contempt of court and kept in prison until" someone "agree" to do whatever FBI tell them to do. I glad that do not happend. If you interest that idea, you should take a trip to Vietnam and enjoy how the idea work with peple there.

    by: Blake Stevens from: Los Angeles
    March 11, 2016 5:41 PM
    Should the FBI release the San Bernardino surveillance video??
    Surveillance Cameras are scattered across the entire property.
    Apple wants to verify the official story.

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