The war between Apple and the feds regarding the unlocking/refusal to unlock a shooter’s iPhone continues unabated. Here’s a round-up of the latest developments:
The Justice Department has struck back at Silicon Valley’s outpouring of support for Apple Inc., reasserting its claim that forcing the company to help unlock a terrorist’s iPhone is legal. “Apple deliberately raised technological barriers that now stand between a lawful warrant and an iPhone containing evidence related to the terrorist mass murder of 14 Americans,” prosecutors said in a filing. “Apple alone can remove those barriers so that the FBI can search the phone, and it can do so without undue burden.”
In response to the DOJ filing, Apple's lead attorney Bruce Sewel (pictured) said the tone of the brief reads like an indictment, the claim that Apple has deliberately made changes to block law enforcement requests for access is “deeply offensive,” and much of the speculation “is based on no substance at all.”
Two leading senators are poised to announce a draft bill that would impose penalties for refusing to comply with a court order. Sens. Richard Burr (R-NC) and Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) will reveal the legislation as early as next week, according to unnamed sources speaking to Reuters. The bill would compel companies such as Apple to comply with court orders to bypass the security of devices or "backdoor" the encryption, or face civil fines, similar to contempt of court charges.
President Barack Obama won’t address a dispute over encryption between the U.S. Justice Department and Appleduring a trip to Texas today, Kristie Canegallo, his deputy chief of staff, told reporters on a conference call.