Apple vs FBI Continues with Feds’ Appeal

Apple vs FBI Continues with Feds’ Appeal

The legal tussle between Apple and the FBI over access to the devices of suspected criminals appears to be far from over after the Feds appealed a decision by a Brooklyn judge in favor of the tech giant in February.

A court filing on Friday seen by Bloomberg revealed that the authorities believe the ruling is unfair because Apple has previously provided access to phones which it can break into – like this 5S device running iOS7.

This is, of course, in contrast to the 5C device running iOS9 which belonged to San Bernardino gunman Syed Farook. Apple claimed it couldn’t crack that phone even if it wanted to.

The FBI famously dropped that court case after claiming it had found an alternative way to get at the data on the device.

In an ironic twist, Apple is now said to be preparing a legal challenge to get the Justice department to disclose how it tried to gain entry into the handset.

In the case being held in Brooklyn, Apple received a boost in February when judge James Orenstein ruled that the All Writs Act of 1789 couldn’t be used by the FBI to compel Apple to circumvent the security on its device.

The archaic law is the primary legal weapon the Feds are using to try to set a precedent which could force all technology companies to provide access to their products on request – so the argument goes.

That’s why most of Silicon Valley appeared to get behind Apple in its battle over the San Bernardino device, in an unprecedented show of solidarity.

Amazon, Cisco, Facebook, Google, Twitter, eBay and others filed amici curiae in support for Apple, describing the FBI’s actions as “unprecedented and unnecessary.”

Some have urged Congress to step in with new legislation designed to bring clarity around these issues.

Source: Information Security Magazine