War of words continues between Apple, the FBI, and the DOJ regarding iPhone encryption

In a memo to Apple employees, CEO Tim Cook said the Justice Department should withdraw a court order that would force Apple to unlock a San Bernardino gunman’s iPhone, saying the company has already done everything within its power and the law to help in the case, according to BuzzFeed News.

The memo thanks Apple employees for their support and notes an outpouring of public support from “thousands of people in all 50 states” as well. It then goes on to again lay out Apple’s reasons for challenging the court order, before calling on the government to withdraw it entirely, according to BuzzFeed News.

Meanwhile, FBI Director James Comey has written an editorial for the Lawfare blog saying the San Bernardino litigation isn't about trying to set a precedent or send any kind of message. “It is about the victims and justice. Fourteen people were slaughtered and many more had their lives and bodies ruined,” he writes. “We owe them a thorough and professional investigation under law. That's what this is. The American people should expect nothing less from the FBI.”

Finally, some victims of the San Bernardino attack will file a legal brief in support of the U.S. government's attempt to force Apple Inc to unlock the encrypted iPhone belonging to one of the shooters. Stephen Larson, a former federal judge who is now in private practice, told Reuters that the victims he represents have an interest in the information which goes beyond the Justice Department's criminal investigation.