On Wednesday; Apple’s CEO Tim Cook said his company would oppose the demand from the federal court ordering to help the FBI mine data from one of the San Bernardino shooters’ iPhone.

Officials from the FBI said they were unable to access the encrypted content on the iPhone 5c. Magistrate Judge Sheri Pym placed the demand to Apple Tuesday in California.

Photo: Mashable
Photo: Mashable

However, Apple is challenging the federal magistrate’s request in order to protect its customer’s privacy. The order would require Apple to assist the federal agency in accessing data from the phone of one of the San Bernardino shooters. Apple is fighting Judge Pym’s order because it threatens the security of Apple’s customers and has “implications far beyond the legal case at hand,” said Tim Cook.

A letter was posted on the company’s website to Apple’s customers stating that the FBI had asked the company to build a backdoor to the iPhone, according to Cook. Now the tech giant Apple and the FBI are headed for a profound conflict on the matter, as the court has yet to determine whether this request is legal or not. Judge Pym basically ordered Apple to build exclusive software capable of unlocking the phone acting as a master key.

“The government is asking Apple to hack our own users and undermine decades of security advancements that protect our customers,” said Apple’s CEO Tim Cook. “Including tens of millions of American citizens from sophisticated hackers and cybercriminals.”

Customers Privacy at Stake

The FBI’s demand on the design of a backdoor access wouldn’t be restricted to criminals’ iPhones alone, as it would apply to any user, anywhere. So years of technological advances in order to provide security and privacy to users would suddenly mean nothing as it could be accessible to the federals. Still, the order place by Magistrate Judge Sheri Pym doest not ask Apple to break the phone’s encryption.

The government agency is asking Apple to disable the feature that erases the data on the phone after ten incorrect tries at entering the password. Given that Apple would grant the government access to the shooter’s phone it would take thousands of combination attempts from officials to crack the password. Although, it seems the debate over encryption has reached a new level in an upcoming legal battle between the FBI and Apple.

San Bernardino attack leaves 14 dead

The shooters known as Farook and Malik opened fire at a holiday party in the Inland Regional Center in San Bernardino. Both attackers were killed on the scene, in a gun battle with the police. The married couple responsible for the killing of 14 people and 22 other wounded, Syed Rizwan Farook and Tashfeen Malik had not been linked to foreign terrorist organizations, according to the FBI. However, federal officials declared that Farook got a $28,500 cash loan just weeks before the attack took place.

It’s been a couple months since two shooters attacked a community center in San Bernardino, California. Apple made reference to the attack on the letter posted by CEO Tim Cook on the company’s website. The company mourns the loss of life and says it wants justice for all those whose lives were affected. A sign of respect from the tech giant, as Apple is taking a stand against the FBI due to the investigation of the case.

Source: The Washington Post