Ted Cruz

Ted Cruz Says Apple Needs to Comply With the Court Order on Encrpytion, It's All Constitutional

Also calls himself a constitutionalist.

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CNN

Ted Cruz said he believed Apple should comply with a court order forcing the private company to assist the FBI and develop software that would permit the agency to bypass the security measures on an iPhone that was used by one of the San Bernardino shooters. He appeared last night at a South Carolina town hall hosted by CNN and moderated by Anderson Cooper.

Cruz said Apple had a binding search order that it should follow. Apple's CEO, Tim Cook, has resisted the government, arguing in an open letter to customers yesterday that the order had "implications far beyond the legal case at hand" and that any software Apple created to bypass the encryption on the San Bernardino iPhone could be used on any iPhone of the same model.

Cruz disagreed, insisting while Apple had a "serious argument that they should not be forced to put a backdoor in every cellphone everyone has," law enforcement had the better argument. The FBI, Cruz insisted, got a search order, which was "consistent with the Fourth Amendment." Apple, Cruz claimed, was being told to "open this phone, not Anderson's phone, not everyone's here, open this phone."

Cruz didn't mention that the iPhone of the attacker belonged the county health department, because the attacker was a government health inspector. A discussion about whether local (and larger) governments should be handing out phones to their employees that they can't access when necessary seems a lot more appropriate in this instance than one about whether the government should get a way in to everyone's phones.

In his letter, Cook had already rejected arguments that "building a backdoor for just one iPhone is a simple, clean-cut solution." That, Cook explained, ignored "both the basics of digital security and the significance of what the government is demanding in this case." He compared the software Apple was being ordered to develop to a master key that was "capable of opening hundreds of millions of locks."

While Cruz insisted Apple should comply with the order forthwith, Apple also has the right to appeal, which it has said it would be doing. Cruz insisted last night that the government order, and the abrogation of the right to the security of our personal papers and effects from government access that came with it, was consistent with the Fourth Amendment. But the case could go all the way to the Supreme Court.

In other portions of the town hall, Cruz argued he was a "constitutionalist" who would appoint the best (conservative) justices. His answer on Apple doesn't bode well for the Fourth Amendment. It was much easier for Cruz to call the judicial order for Kim Davis, a Kentucky clerk, to perform the duties required of her, "lawless" because of the perceived abrogation of her rights in that instance.

Apple's argument, however, may not be as clear as it sounds either. Shane Harris at The Daily Beast reports that Apple has unlocked phones for authorities on at least 70 occasions in the last eight years. The feds, Harris reported, had also admitted to having developed a method to get through the encryption of one version of the iPhone iOS. That appears to undercut the government's use of the All Writs Act of 1789, which requires such an order as Apple received to be a last resort for method.

Harris also brought up a New York case involving a meth dealer's iPhone that Apple is also resisting. There, Apple is arguing, among other things, that the "reputational harm" caused by breaking into the phone for the government "could have a longer term economic impact beyond the mere cost of performing the single extraction at issue."  Apple didn't start positioning itself as a guardian of privacy, Harris noted, until Edward Snowden's disclosures about the scale of the government's Internet surveillance activities.

Customers want their data to be secure, and will seek out service providers that can offer that. Ted Cruz acknowledged that an encryption backdoor is a legitimate concern because of hackers and cyber criminals that could try to break into people's phones. But people are also concerned about the government doing so, hence the reputational pressure felt by Apple.

Government does not face such reputational pressures, and given Ted Cruz's uncanny ability to occupy every side of a position at the moment that side is the politically opportune one and his rise in the polls, maybe neither does he.

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259 responses to “Ted Cruz Says Apple Needs to Comply With the Court Order on Encrpytion, It's All Constitutional

  1. Dammit Ted!

    Not that I had high hopes but jesus man tease me a little.

    1. Agreed. Additionally, this story forces me to support motherfucking Apple. You have no idea how dirty it makes me feel to side with the cult.

      1. Well, I guess you can feel better knowing that they are only finally doing this because they are afraid of losing market share and not for any principles?

        I guess?

        1. Its probably just as much involving “corporate lawyers meeting with the marketing department” and deciding ‘this will get us lots of positive PR and also help keep us busy’

      2. Me too. I’m gonna need another shower after siding with Apple.

        Ted’s wrong about this. Perhaps he’ll rethink it. I still say, compared to the rest of the “electable” candidates, I’d prefer his brand of government. I’m not gonna vote for him (or any of these bastards), but I wouldn’t be as concerned as I would be with a Trump, Hillary, Rubio, or Sanders.

        1. I still say, compared to the rest of the “electable” candidates, I’d prefer his brand of government.

          ^This^

          Everyone else in the race who I’ve heard weigh in is on Ted’s side.

        2. Someone out of that group is going to be elected president. I won’t be happy about it in any case, but Cruz *should be* the least horrible result.

          He’s not making me feel secure in that judgment with this bullshit, however.

        3. I disagree. In the last month, Cruz went from a candidate I wouldn’t vote for but the best outcome of all the terrible major party candidates to just another shitty candidate.

          1. I can see that side, but I’m trying to stay optimistic about someone.

            I still say he’s (perhaps marginally) better than Trump/Hillary (they’re the same kind of Statist awful to me), Bernie (c’mon, he’s an out and out Socialist), and Rubio (who I’m confident is a social warrior, war happy, GOP group-thinker).

            It may not be saying much, but I’m clinging to something.

        4. Perhaps he’ll rethink it.

          He may re-think it to get elected. Once elected, he’ll go back to his current opinion. He cannot be trusted.

        5. Wait, there are electable candidates?

    2. Cruz disagreed, insisting while Apple had a “serious argument that they should not be forced to put a backdoor in every cellphone everyone has,” law enforcement had the better argument.

      So I guess Ted Cruz is a backdoor man.

      1. Not many are willing to take on that enormously fat hog of his.

        1. More cushion for the pushin’!

      2. +1 Howlin’ Wolf

      3. Backdoor Tuna Can is my new band name

    3. Very disappointing, but no surprise, once you recall that Ted Cruz used to be a prosecutor.

    4. Cruz is not a libertarian. He is , I believe, sincere in his respect for the constitution and his desire for a limited federal government. However he seems to believe that the courts and federal bureaucracy should be treated as though they were other than corrupt. Perhaps if one seeks to lead and reform federal government this is a necessary position to take. But in fact many federal bureaucracies and courts are in fact corrupt and should not be granted any deference .

  2. Ted Cruz says a lot of things.

    1. Coilette: But, you always said you’d rather burn down a convent than give up showbusiness!

      Calculon: I’ve always said many things. But now all I want is a peaceful life and a quiet villa overlooking a vineyard…with you.

        1. All you could eat!

  3. Cruz is the Manitobian candidate – he will stage a terrorist attack and use it as a pretext to rescind all constitutional rights to establish a Christian Caliphate (Gilead). If this example doesn’t prove it I don’t know what will.

    1. I… what?

      1. I… what?

        chuckled at the phrase “Manitoban candidate?”

        1. Well, yeah, that was pretty funny.

      2. Fucking Poe’s law. I can’t tell if this was serious or satire, but I laughed either way.

        1. This guy thinks the FBI is conducting a “witch hunt” against “Hillary Clinton” who is “obviously innocent”. If it’s satire, then it’s a long-running con game with a very committed actor.

          1. Hillary Clinton should not have been in quotes.

            1. that’s if you don’t subscribe to the theory that this ‘hillary’ body is just a temporary host for Kali Ma the Destroyer

              1. I’m pretty sure 50% of these candidates came from a dystopian future in order to mess with us.

          2. OTOH, calling Cruz The Manitobian candidate is a pretty good turn of phrase. I may hate laughing, but I laughed, so you know, I’ll give him credit for that one. Unless it was an autocorrect mistake, but I laughed either way.

            1. It’s a funny turn of phrase, I won’t deny that.

    2. As in Ricardo “Khanithian Leather” Manitobian?

      1. Margaret Atwood’s Handmaid’s Tale

        http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/…..-1.2075254

        1. Canadian Content, eh?

  4. Fuck this tard.

    1. He’s the only choice you can make in this, the most important election EVAR!

      /the usual suspects after July

      1. ugh so partisan, much whine

        1. I believe you’re the one that says this never happens.

          1. No i’m the one who doesnt care and thinks whining about it constantly months in advance is just as boring

      2. Vote Trump. He’s the most middle of the road candidate. Don’t listen to the media, go read what he actually says and you will see an entirely different Trump. Go read his first book, it’s how he has been running his whole campaign. He’s been the most honest one up there out of all of them.

  5. You know who else wanted others to comply with orders…

      1. His friends call him Bill.

          1. *sips drink*

            1. Now, you know how I don’t like to use the sit down gun, but this morning we just don’t have time for mucking about.

      2. Hey now, William Patrick Hitler was a fine, upstanding American WWII veteran!

    1. Your mother?…

  6. I’m puzzled over how Apple could be ordered to open a phone that doesn’t belong to them.

    And, to throw a new issue into the mix, couldn’t this be construed as a ‘taking’ of Apple’s reputation, labor and IP? While the ‘use’ is certainly a public use, the FMV of all that could be in the tens of billions of dollars.

    1. Yes, all of these “constitutionalists” seem to always fail to point out the constitutional authority which allows the government to order a company to create something for the government’s convenience.

      1. ^This.

        They are ordering Apple to create something that does not already exist. The judge that ordered this and the candidate that endorsed it should be hanged from the lamp posts in front of the courthouse.

        Cruz certainly lost my vote.

        1. Hanging from lamp posts is so gauche. Situations like this are why God gave us wood chippers.

          Not that I endorse such action, nor have I heard anyone mention inclinations of said parties towards the ovine population.

        2. Same here… The surveillance state is a no-vote zone for me

        3. They are ordering Apple to create something that does not already exist.

          There’s a reason they can’t just use an ordinary search warrant for this, because they aren’t really conducting a search.

          They are ordering Apple to make something for them, under threat of violence, without pay. I’m pretty sure we fought a Civil War over that kind of thing.

          Once the precedent is set that the government can reduce you to indentured servitude, well, what’s the limit.

          1. I’m pretty sure we fought a Civil War over that kind of thing.

            Well to be technical it was fought over the issue of secession, an issue which itself was largely predicated on slavery. But yes, the state is arguing for indentured servitude/slavery and not as punishment for committing a crime.

      2. Like baking a wedding cake?

  7. You know there was a time when Cruz seemed like a slightly more so-con/right version of Rand Paul. Har!

    1. Still does if your perspective is wide enough to encompass Pol Pot!

    2. Former prosecutors often have more sympathy for law enforcement arguments.

      Though I have no idea why Apple argument that they do not know how to do this is of lesser quality than DOJ.

    3. The mainstream GOP has long since stopped pretending it actually cares about liberty, privacy or due process. Rand Paul is just that one guy who never got the memo.

  8. Apple didn’t start positioning itself as a guardian of privacy, Harris noted, until Edward Snowden’s disclosures about the scale of the government’s Internet surveillance activities.

    Proving once again that Snowden is a hero.

    1. Damn that guy ruining all the government’s fun

    2. Where are the Snowdens of yesteryear?

      1. he’s back there

      2. Buried in unmarked graves?

        1. I was thinking of what the pilot said to Yossarian

          1. It’s such a catch-22

  9. Jeebus. I was going to use him as my second choice. I may just vote Bernie. Or who ever the Libertarians run.

    1. Has Bernie released a position clarification here? You might have to eliminate him too.

      1. Has Bernie released a position clarification here?

        You mean besides the general opposition to Apple as a corporate entity, right?

        Backing Apple kinda undermines the scum-sucking corporate degenerates narrative a bit. The statement, if ever issued, will be interesting to read.

    2. Or, you know, not.

      Voting shouldn’t be an autonomic reaction.

      1. ^ This. It is one of the biggest lies told that “you have to vote.” No, I don’t. And I wish 95% of the idiots that do, wouldn’t.

        1. Universal suffrage is over-rated.

      2. Sad to say but I enjoy it. I was even on the ballot once. But it was under Libertarian duress.

    3. Yeah, Socialists and Commies are so well known for their respect of individual privacy rights. The KGB and Stazi were all about making sure they had warrants signed by objective judges before spying on their citizens.

    4. Even if Sanders came out in opposition to this particular action, he is almost certainly pro “net neutrality”, which is roughly analogous to defending flag burning but being against Citizens United. Coincidentally, those are also some of Sanders’ positions.

      “No, the government can’t have a backdoor into your phone! It can only have a backdoor into the entire telecommunications infrastructure!”

  10. Can’t they just go down to the morgue and push his finger against the print scanner? Jeez, do I need to think of everything?

    1. The 5c does not have the touch id sensor. Law enforcement already does that most likely with 5s+ phones.

    2. Can’t they just go down to the morgue and push his finger against the print scanner?

      Is she mostly dead or all dead? If it’s just mostly dead, break out the bellows and order the MLTs!

      1. order the MLTs

        Who can eat at a time like this?

      2. +1 “Aaaaas yooooouuuu wiiiiiish!”

      3. + 1 blave

  11. Thought experiment: what would have Scalia thought of this? I think he would disappoint on this.

    1. “Why would the FBI be interested in using this key to unlock other people’s phones?”

      1. “Given the rigorous oversight over law enforcement, this would surely never happen.”

        1. New. Professionalism.

  12. So, what’s Clinton’s position here? Sanders? Any of the other gajillion candidates running. It’d be interesting to know.

  13. The fact that this is a phone that belongs to a government agency may actually limit Apple’s arguments. This turns into what should be a relatively straightforward 4th Amendment case into a messy case involving licenses and the government’s right to access information on its property.

    The judge’s order says that whatever software Apple codes shall be limited only to the iPhone at issue. But once the FBI has the code, what is stopping them (or any other hacker that gets their hands on it), from modifying the code to be used on any other iPhone? Does the code magically delete itself when you take out the iPhone’s identifying information?

    1. But once the FBI has the code, what is stopping them (or any other hacker that gets their hands on it), from modifying the code to be used on any other iPhone?

      As best as I can tell, nothing. Which is a lesson on how thin a thread our privacy hangs. I support Apple’s fight here but I think this goes a certain distance in making us think how and where we store our data.

      Will HTC or LG fight this battle?

    2. what is stopping them … from modifying the code to be used on any other iPhone?

      Nothing. The idea that Apple can limit a hypothetical passkey hack to “one phone” is a fantasy.

    3. In theory the FBI could hand the phone over to Apple, they could develop the new IOS version and then proceed to hack the phone themselves once that is done they could copy the contents of the phones hard drive onto a different device and deliver that data while Apple then proceeds to destroy the work.

      Problem is once they do this once the next time the FBI is going to come with a court order demanding that they turn the source code for any tools they develop to crack the phone

      1. Technically they could do that now because Apple has that ability. In fact, this is essentially what the FBI is doing, but all in one shot.

      2. That would break the chain of evidence.

        1. What difference does that make? The original owner is dead and anyone implicated as an overseas accomplice on this phone will just receive a dronin’ regardless of legal niceties.

        2. Chain of evidence is needed for a criminal proceeding, it is not needed to establish probable cause to initiate an investigation.

          The point of hacking into the phone is to identify others whom they should be investigating, should those investigations bear any fruit the only role this phone would play is that it established probable cause

    4. The judge’s order says that whatever software Apple codes shall be limited only to the iPhone at issue.

      Is that even possible? And if so, how hard it would be to make it true skeleton key?

      If all the FBI wanted was the info on this phone, they wouldn’t be demanding that Apple give them the software (which they are). They would give the phone to Apple and order Apple to decrypt it and give the contents to them (which would still be unconstitutional, the whole ordering Apple to decrypt part). The fact that they are demanding the software tells you they want the software, which is useless to them as “this-phone-only” unless they can jailbreak it for any phone.

  14. Yep. This is the 1884 the lady threw the hammer into in the Apple commercial. Every utterance of Cruz and other Tea Party fanatics is a paraphrasis of utterances and writings of the Christian National Socialist German Workers’ Party activists and politicians from 1920 through 1945. From the 25 Points through Mein Kampf through Goebbels’ Michael through the Volkischer Beobachter all Nazis were working for God, just like Ted. Imitation National Socialist websites omit entirely the references to God, Jesus and the Bible that are on practically every page of Mein Kampf. False flag operations?

      1. He’s saying what we’re all thinking.

        1. I don’t think he goes far enough.

    1. Fuck me Hank, you better up your Fluoxetine dosage. And I mean QUICK!

    2. Is the Hank Phillips handle just a piece of performance art, or is he a legitimate loon?

    3. Thanks, Hank. You pissed on the suffering of 12 million people all because Cruz is too “God-y” for your tastes. I appreciate you. Bless up.

    4. 1884 is one of my all-time favorite dystopian works. It’s right up there with Fahreinheit 351.

      1. Eh, it’s just a knockoff of Yevgeniy Zamyatin’s Some Dudes.

      2. It doesn’t hold a candle to Tolstoy’s magnum opus ‘War, what is good for?’

        1. Elaine fell for it. 🙂

      3. It’s the steampunk fanfic version.

    5. Wait a sec. Is this thing passing the Turing test?

      1. About as well as Palin’s Buttplug.

      2. Apparently you’re suspicious, so I’m going to call it a marginal fail.

    6. Actually, you are entirely full of shit. Mein kampf does not advocate for Christianity. Hitler was using Christianity as an example of a movement by which you can spread with fanaticism, which had waned recently in Europe. He also uses Christian basically as a European that is not a Jew.

      There are no “25” points in Mein Kampf. There are 12 chapters in Volume 1. The only numbered “points” are 14 numbered points in Chapter XII of Volume 1. Religion is not even mentioned in these points until point 11, and then it is only vaguely referenced as the party shouldn’t try to cause religious change, but political change. Item 12 discusses Christianity only from the standpoint that to form his movement they must be as fanatical as those who founded Christianity. That is pretty much all there is in Volume I. Volume II has a couple of paragraphs about God and how missionaries shouldn’t waste their time on the blacks, but stay at home. Based on the rest of the entire work, it is like these paragraphs were added after the fact to mollify some Christian conservative Germans, but the idea that almost every page is dripping with God and Christ is simply fucking wrong.

      Try reading something you fucking liar.

      1. BTW: I forgot to add that there are 15 Chapters in Volume 2. You can read the whole fucking thing online.

        Or you can just Godwin the shit out of those people you don’t politically agree with.

        1. Fair point. I was just so livid at his post. However, only 1 of the 25 planks even mentions religion. And essentially it is a non-denominational take on Christianity, and just an excuse to continue to argue against Jews.

      2. Also, Hitler had to basically hoodwink the Center Party (Zentrum) in order to get the Enabling Acts passed. All of his paeans to Christianity in the speech he gave to support the passage of the bill were there to get the leader of Zentrum (Ludwig Kaas) and his fellow party members to agree to it. There were many promises made to Kaas that were never delivered upon, as the NSDAP basically took total control of the government shortly after the passage of the Acts.

        It is thus more accurate to say many Christians in Germany were complicit with the crimes of the NSDAP but to associate Nazism indelibly with Christianity is ahistorical nonsense.

      3. One of the notable differences between SS units and Heer units was the absence of chaplains in the SS. I think we can all agree that the SS was fairly Nazi, right?

        Hitler wasn’t a dummy. Despite his own personal dislike of Christianity as a religion of weakness and timidity, he was smart enough to intuit that most of the people whose support he sought (and make no mistake, the Nazis spent enormous resources on what would today be called branding – they were very observant of public opinion and the need to present their policies in a manner that would garner maximum public support and enthusiasm) were Christians who would reject an explicitly anti-Christian party. So he did his best to co-opt the churches into his German Christian movement which sought to synthesize National Socialism and Protestant Christianity. Hitler also did everything he thought politically viable to undermine the Catholic Church’s position in German society, banning the Catholic political party Centre Party, eliminating Catholic youth and social organizations or forcing them to join their Nazi counterparts, shutting down Catholic newspapers.

        1. The most you can say about Hitler’s personal views of religion is that he was vaguely “spiritual” in a New Age-y sort of way – the “I believe in God but not religion” kind of belief that you hear a lot of people claim. He did seem to believe in a creator deity of some kind, but he certainly didn’t worship it in any conventional sense. Many of his closest lieutenants were explicitly anti-Christian, most prominently Goebbels and Himmler. Himmler in particular viewed Christianity as a corrosive influence that had historically diminished the German race. Within the SS, he promoted holidays and ceremonies that can best be described as neo-pagan as replacements for Christian holidays, with an end goal of restoring Germany’s ancient pagan identity.

          1. +1 Thule-Gesellschaft

    7. Some Nazis tried to claim to speak for Christians.

      Ergo, Christians = Nazis.

      Again, we like to call these “faulty generalization” fallacies. He’s commits several of them every time he comments.

  15. Every fucking time I get to the point that I am all in for Cruz, he pulls something like this. Having said that, I am still not entirely convinced about this from any direction.

    Granted, a valid search warrant to get the information on the phone is perfectly constitutional. And it is arguable whether or not it is constitutional to have a court issue an order to a locksmith to provide a key to a specific lock that he may have created. But this does seem like much more than that.

    From a surface level perspective, it does seem appropriate for the court to issue an order for Apple to “unlock” a phone pursuant to a legitimate investigation. However, the trouble seems to be that 1) the technology doesn’t currently exist to do what the govt wants Apple to do, 2) and if Apple was able to invent it, it would compromise thier customer security as well as their financial position. If a company is forced to do R&D to invent something for the government, than that should be treated as a “taking”, and therefore the govt should pay Apple for the expenses involved.

    I am not ready to give up, but it does seem like Cruz has an uncanny way of pissing me off lately.

    1. Yes. I don’t like Ted’s posturing, and a lot of his ideas lately are more and more pro-government in their approach. That concerns me. But, I’ll repeat it, I’m still less concerned with him than I am any of the other nutjobs / statists. Doesn’t mean I wouldn’t hold his feet to the fire if he ever became president. Ultimately, though, we’re still living in fantasy-world if we think a pure libertarian is ever becoming president again unless we go through less-statist iterations like Cruz (hopefully? maybe?)

      1. Voting for the ‘lesser’ evil gives them no incentive to put forth candidates that are not evil. Why not try something else? To be honest, if someone is going to vote for evil, I would rather them not vote at all.

    2. And it is arguable whether or not it is constitutional to have a court issue an order to a locksmith to provide a key to a specific lock that he may have created.

      If it is, it shouldn’t be. There should be no question that the government cannot order you to labor for them, without pay and under threat of violence.

      1. The state already orders me to do ~50% of my labor for them without pay and under threat of violence, the amount of takings in all the various taxes witheld.

  16. I’m not to worried. The feds are totally trustworthy. I mean they’ve managed to keep our nuclear secrets out of the hands of the Russians for 7 decades or more.

    1. Not to mention their fierce commitment to accountability when it comes to sensitive data breaches.

      1. Fed-gov employees can rest assured their private data will never, ever be acquired by black hats with evil intentions.

  17. It’s possible to want the government to do the wrong thing.

    “Cruz disagreed, insisting while Apple had a “serious argument that they should not be forced to put a backdoor in every cellphone everyone has,” law enforcement had the better argument. The FBI, Cruz insisted, got a search order, which was “consistent with the Fourth Amendment.” Apple, Cruz claimed, was being told to “open this phone, not Anderson’s phone, not everyone’s here, open this phone.”

    I think Cruz might be right about that.

    Like I said, I’m rooting for Apple, but I think the FBI is probably right.

    The problem with warrantless wiretapping is that it’s warrantless. The problem with mass collection of data is that it collects the data of people for whom there is no probable cause.

    It’s sort of like the AUMF. I don’t like what the AUMF says. I don’t like what Presidents of different parties have used the AUMF to do.

    But the AUMF says what it says regardless of whether I like it.

    Whether Apple can be compelled by the government to actively search their customers’ data and act as a proxy for the government in that regard is a separate question, but whatever the problem is with a judge ordering Apple to comply with a warrant or a subpoena, the problem isn’t that there isn’t a warrant or a subpoena.

    1. Apple, Cruz claimed, was being told to “open this phone,

      Privacy isn’t the main issue, forced labor is.

      1. People are compelled to incur the costs of complying with subpoenas all the time.

        1. Uninvolved people?

        2. There are the costs of digging stuff out of office computers or filing cabinets a company owns or the like which would be expected. Developing new software and possibly hardware is an entirely different thing. Government doesn’t subpoena new espionage systems from it’s contractors, it pays for them. If the government wants to crack into the phone they should go see if one of those ‘hackers’ they like to prosecute might be willing to do it for a price.

        3. There are the costs of digging stuff out of office computers or filing cabinets a company owns or the like which would be expected. Developing new software and possibly hardware is an entirely different thing. Government doesn’t subpoena new espionage systems from it’s contractors, it pays for them. If the government wants to crack into the phone they should go see if one of those ‘hackers’ they like to prosecute might be willing to do it for a price.

      2. They’re both huge issues.

    2. The FBI, Cruz insisted, got a search order, which was “consistent with the Fourth Amendment.”

      This isn’t a search order. A warrant or subpoena can require you to turn over stuff you actually have (with some fairly minor exceptions for creating records that you would ordinarily create in the course of business). It cannot require you to create a new product or tool.

      And, yes, you have to gather and produce what you already have at your own expense. Which is not the same, at all, as having to create a new product or tool on demand.

  18. I’m sure the FBI has a warrant for his email. How bout just getting the password wrong so many times it sends the change your password request. Then they work with Apple. Just spitballing here. There seem to be several ways to get the info without compromising the encryption safeguards.

    All of this may have changed recently so it’s possible I’m talking out of my ass. When I had an iphone years ago, I could log into itunes, plug in the phone and download text messages, imessage, etc to the computer without ever unlocking the phone.

    1. iOS is designed to purge itself after too many password attempts, or something like that.

      1. 10 attempts and it wipes all data.

        1. And for those who say that it’s only useful for terrorists and pedophiles, I know lawyers and doctors who have that option turned on because they regularly handle sensitive data on their phones. And having their phones stolen and and the data stored on them stolen could easily lead to a lawsuit.

          1. It also works a general theft deterrent. You cannot even use or resurrect an iPhone after the hard wipe.

            1. Oh yeah I understand that. I was just putting that out there because of the whole “The only people who need that feature are terrorists and pedos,” I was hearing on the radio the other day. Trying to point out that there are very good valid reasons upstanding professional s might also like that option.

  19. I’m sure the FBI has a warrant for his email. How bout just getting the password wrong so many times it sends the change your password request. Then they work with Apple. Just spitballing here. There seem to be several ways to get the info without compromising the encryption safeguards.

    All of this may have changed recently so it’s possible I’m talking out of my ass. When I had an iphone years ago, I could log into itunes, plug in the phone and download text messages, imessage, etc to the computer without ever unlocking the phone.

    1. It’s not an email password. It’s the passkey to unlock the phone. Enter the wrong key too many times and the phone wipes itself.

    2. There seem to be several ways to get the info without compromising the encryption safeguards.

      The idea behind encryption is that the information remains unknown/unshared against consent. Anything else is compromising it.

      The part that pisses me off the most is that the FBI is literally asking to have stuff built into the phone(s software). No reason why they couldn’t turn around and require guns to have smart triggers or other devices to have features that serve no other purpose than to aid Law Enforcement.

      The point that doesn’t get brought up enough “[Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance, Jr.] cites “approximately 111 search warrants for smartphones” that could not be executed “because those devices were running iOS 8″ and were encrypted. Surely, he argues, this should never happen.”

      The slippery slope is neither theoretical nor fallacious.

      1. It is not a slippery slope if one side has openly stated it as an endgame.

  20. They have offered to pay for Apple services sooooooo

    Step 1: Submit a bid for 1 billion to crack their own encryption
    Step 2: Quietly rework their encryption scheme and release it to the still living phone owners
    Step 3: Profit

    1. The problem with Step #2 is that it may not work on iPhones already out there. Once a phone is completely encrypted, you can’t decrypt it (at least that is how it is with Androids). I guess you can encrypt the encrypted data AGAIN but that might add noticeable lag to people using the phone.

      Also, the government is not technically asking Apple to decrypt the contents of the phone. They’re asking for a software workaround to brute force the passkey (10,000 possible combinations) such that the phone doesn’t brick itself after X number of wrong attempts. The phone will still be encrypted, the government will just have the passkey. Apple considers this a backdoor to all (or a significant subset of) iPhones’ encryption protections. While they can essentially make this software workaround obsolete by rejiggering the hardware in all future iPhones, the workaround will likely be viable with some modifications on current iPhones.

    2. They have offered to pay for Apple services sooooooo

      Being jaded as I am, I assume they aren’t offering enough. Otherwise, they hand Apple the phone, $100, and point the gun at them. At which point Apple takes the phone, turns their back, makes some hand motions, turns around again and hands them the phone, wiped of all data, and says, “Sorry, can’t be hacked.”

      1. They in no way will ever give the phone to Apple. I’m sure if the government was willing to give the phone to Apple, Apple would get the information (and then securely delete the software that made it possible… and then rejigger all future iPhones’ hardware just to be safe). The government wants Apple to turn over the software to the government which is crazy.

        1. The FBI clearly has no issues contracting a team of Geniuses from Apple. They can’t crack the current encryption so they can’t look at Apple’s ‘patch’ and *know* that it won’t just fubar everything. So, phone to software or software to phone, I assume the reason Apple hasn’t wiped out the data, shrugged, and said “No, Fuck *you*, that’s why!” is because $$$ and/or political favors.

          Not that I blame them, but their current stance is a rather obvious indecisive between constitutionality/freedom and profit.

  21. What court proceeding allowed them to get this warrant in the first place? There’s no prosecution. The San Bernardino shooters are dead.

    1. I’m going to go out on a limb and say the warrant is pursuant to an investigation, not a trial

      1. Right, but investigating what? They already know who did it.

        This is just a form of intelligence gathering, and the feds shouldn’t have been issued a probable cause warrant or whatever they have now. This is going to go all the way to the supreme court, where I’m sure I’ll end up disappointed.

        1. Right, but investigating what?

          If there are other people involved, and if so, what extent?

        2. What Camping said. I assume they’re attempting to see if they’re part of a larger network or terrorists or if they were in communication with any collaborators. I don’t see the investigation as a problem– the problem is the methodology.

        3. Is there any evidence to suggest that there is anything of any consequence on that phone, or is this just the type of fishing expedition that is specifically prohibited by the 4th?

          1. That’s a good question. I’m guessing the phone is itself, fair game. For instance, whenever there’s a mass shooting, we see the cops hauling out all the shooter’s possessions from his apartment or home. the question here is can the government compel a third party to assist in the investigation?

          2. This is a test case to break end-to-end encryption.

            The feds already have access to call records. So they already know every person this pair of murderers talked to.

            Unless the feds think there are photos of near-term targets or a fucking org chart of terrorists, there is nothing on the phone that can be critical to their investigation.

            1. The feds are saying that the phone will tell them what happened between the office shooting and the shoot out with the cops 28 minutes later.

              What are the chances he even used his phone during this time?

              1. GPS tracking maybe.

              2. 100%, but he was playing Candy Crush and checking Twitter.

              3. The feds are saying that the phone will tell them what happened between the office shooting and the shoot out with the cops 28 minutes later.

                They can already find out who was called or texted during that period from phone records.

                They can probably recover the texts from the buffers the phone companies use for texting.

                About the only thing they might not be able to get is any emails sent from the phone, if they were from an email account the feds don’t know about.

                This is a paper-thin pretext for demanding a skeleton key for Apple phones.

        4. This is going to go all the way to the supreme court, where I’m sure I’ll end up disappointed.

          If a gov’t can force people to contribute to a retirement fund, buy health insurance, manufacture cars with seat belts, etc. I see no reason how this isn’t also a winner for gov’t

          1. Except I don’t see how they shoehorn this one into a “commerce clause” catchall, or the taxing power of the fedgov.

            1. Hey, this clearly falls under the “general welfare” clause, man…

      2. The feds have already clearly stated said the attackers were acting alone. So it’s unclear what information they hope to learn on the phone. Like somebody said, they have call and text records, social media records, etc. It is possible the iPhone would point to other yet-unknown co-conspirators using a secure messaging service such as Telegram but that’s highly unlikely.

        1. Photos. Especially what other locations they might have cased.

          Video.

          Also, there could have been a 3rd shooter.

          I don’t like this situation, because, honestly, if I’m the FBI I can kinda see how I want to get into that phone.

          And if I’m a victim or a victim’s family member…

          But I also see Apple’s position.

          I think Ted is just saying that if law enforcement gets the requisite warrant, they have the law on their side to get into the phone, but now Apple has a dead-man’s switch, so it needs to be decided by the courts.

    1. He’s looking great, BTW.

      Eek!

      1. He’s got that hard-drinkin’, whiskey and cigar soaked look that’s sorely lacking in today’s society.

    2. I’m calling bullshit on his claim, though. He says he’ll use “social engineering” to hack the phone – which means he’ll research the shooter and make an educated guess at the passkey. Maybe he’ll guess right, maybe not.

      But he won’t decrypt the content without that passkey. The whole point of the latest encryption technology is you can’t break it – not without either quantum computers that don’t exist yet or thousands of years on your hands.

      1. I thought the internal encryption was based on the pin… that the pin in this case WAS the passkey. Are we now saying that even if they have the pin, the FBI will still be faced with encrypted data? If that’s the case, they won’t crack the encryption.

        1. that the pin in this case WAS the passkey

          Correct. Get the passkey and you get access to everything, just like typing it in yourself. But without the passkey, you can’t decrypt it.

    3. Everyone knows libertarians are heartless moneygrubbers who won’t do anything for free. They probably turned down the contract when they got to the “souls of your first-born” clause.

      They should talk to HRC instead, I hear she’s got some connections in the tech sector.

      1. “They should talk to HRC instead, I hear she’s got some connections in the tech sector.”

        She knows a guy.

  22. It wasn’t like Cruz was anywhere within miles of getting my vote anyhow, so I can just add this the the pile of reasons he ought to take a long walk on a short pier.

  23. How much money have we dumped into the NSA last year, and they can’t crack a fucking Iphone?

    1. The answer is obviously “not enough.”

    2. If a 15 yr old kid could jailbreak the iphone by drilling a hole in a chip I find it difficult to believe that the NSA couldn’t defeat the auto-delete function on password attempts with a hardware mod. But I admit I’m speculating wildly.

      1. Just because they are trying to spy on everyone in the U.S. doesn’t mean they’re any good at it.

      2. He’s single, ladies!

      3. Yes! I wouldn’t be shocked if the encryption and security portions are located on a separate chip than the memory. Just desolder the memory chip, build a rig to communicate with the chip, and get cracking.

        They could have done it by now if they had worried more about getting the data and less about suing people.

        1. That is not how encryption works. If you looked at the memory, all you would see is gibberish.

  24. I predict that Apple will relent and crack the phone and then they discover another terrorist plot about to unfold and they foil it just in time.

    1. Do you write dumb “ripped from the headlines” episodes for L&O?

    2. Yes. That is something you’d say, One-Eye.

    3. With the help of Jack Bauer of course.

    4. +1 remote detonator

  25. I know I’m being naive here, but can someone explain to me Apple’s legal case that they don’t have to comply with a court order? I mean, is it that it’s a court order and not a warrant? It seems to me pretty simple for the authorities to change that. Also, if it’s a matter of concern over security, can they just keep the program proprietary and turn over the data retrieved?

    Not saying I agree with the authorities, I just haven’t had a chance to get into the details of the argument.

    1. Try reading Tim Cook’s explanation.

      1. Cook’s explanation is why he doesn’t want to do it. It’s not clear to me that it suffices as to his legal case.

        1. According to the judge, it doesn’t.

    2. Apple will have to update this particular phone with a software patch that doesn’t exist yet that allows the FBI to run a brute force hack to unlock the phone. Once the FBI has the phone and unlocks it, nothing keeps the FBI from using the software to crack any other phone with the same encryption scheme.

      1. Again, it’s not clear from Cook’s argument, why can’t they turn the phone over to Apple and have them pull the data? Apple keeps the hacking code and the Feds have to get a warrant when they want Apple to use it.

        1. 1. They’re being asked not to hand over data, but to provide a means to defeat the protection measures that they have installed on the phone. In so doing, they will be undermining the value of their own product.

          2. The Feds are going to need to know what Apple did and be able to replicate it, otherwise they won’t be able to use any evidence obtained in court.

          1. “The Feds are going to need to know what Apple did and be able to replicate it, otherwise they won’t be able to use any evidence obtained in court.”

            we’re getting into legal weeds here, but couldn’t that be provided to the judge, and not the feds?

            1. Do you know any judges with PhDs in computer science? I guess you could get some affidavits from Apple employees, but I don’t know if that would pass muster. For practical expediency, the FBI computer forensics team are going to be the legal experts that the judge defers to, and they can’t attest to anything they can’t examine themselves.

              1. “Do you know any judges with PhDs in computer science?”

                I know lawyers, and i know cases where corporate secrets have been retained by only making them available to the judge.

                1. What if the judge can’t understand the secret?

                  1. i assume then they’d refer to outside experts to deliver some kind of testimony, as you note. I’m not sure that necessarily requires handing the keys to the castle over to the feds in the process.

                  2. BTW = based on the stuff i mentioned below… it seems pretty clear that the FBI doesn’t care at all about the issues of “This specific phone” and is simply using this case as the context in which to push harder for compliance from Apple…

                    i.e. they don’t care about the data. they want Apple to stop offering consumers “unbreakable” technology.

        2. “why can’t they turn the phone over to Apple and have them pull the data?”

          This assumes that they really mean what they say and only want “this phone’s” data, and not force Apple to hand over tools for accessing millions of devices.

          1. The result is the same whether Apple is performing it as a service or providing the tools, the government is compelling them to break their encryption.

    3. Personally, I have a problem with court orders issued to third parties. I realize that this covers subpoenas and I’ve got mixed feelings about those, but it bothers me that the government can direct enforceable orders at people who have nothing to do with the crime (or whatever matter is at issue in a civil case) for its own convenience.

    4. Also, if it’s a matter of concern over security, can they just keep the program proprietary and turn over the data retrieved?

      This still carries all manner of undesirable implications. Formerly unbreakable encryption is now breakable and known breakable by one entity; Apple. The line of dozens of DAs with thousands of phones will start at one door and the line of attorney’s representing ‘leaked/hacked celebrity photos’ claimants will start at the other.

      1. Then, as a practical matter they should have just claimed incompetence to the task.

        1. Why don’t you ask Martha Stewart about how things work out when you’ve committed no crime but aren’t forthcoming to federal investigators?

          1. “Forthright with” is more accurate than “forthcoming to”; the point is, you do not lie to the Feds.

        2. Then, as a practical matter they should have just claimed incompetence to the task.

          So, the options are comply or perjury? It’s getting hard to tell where the “devil’s advocation” starts.

          The assumption is that all court orders are physically, morally, and constitutionally viable. While Cook doesn’t specifically make any one of these cases he does generally call on the principles; the phone was designed to do X, just because the court issues orders that it do Y instead doesn’t automatically mean Apple should/could make it do that..

          How would it be different if the court ordered that all phones sent an SMS to the local PD if the user said any of a list of keywords in conversation? Cook could clearly cite 1A violations, but he isn’t Rand Paul, and instead just calls for ‘national conversation’ about the issue.

          Ignoring everything Cook says, along with all the wider implications, essentially reduces it to ‘What right does *anyone* have to refuse a court order *ever*?” or “Where in the constitution are you guaranteed the right to refuse a court/executive/other order?” To wit; “Nowhere.”

      2. If there’s a backdoor to the secure system, then it’s not really secure. If you put a bunch of bars on the windows of your house, then hide a key under the potted plant by the front door, then your house is not secure, you just have the illusion of security.

        If Apple’s security is worth a damn, then Apple can’t break it. If Apple can break it, then that means someone else can too, and that means thaat Apple’s encryption is garbage. If Apple’s encryption is decent, then the judge might as well order them to produce a rainbow colored unicorn.

        1. The default is a six-digit alphanumeric (one case only) passcode, which means there are 36^6 or just over 2 billion combinations. It has been stated before that it takes about 80 ms to verify whether a chosen passcode is the correct one. It would take 1 computer about 5.5 years, or 1000 computers about 2 days, to try every possible combination (with average time to crack being about half that).

          However, it has also been stated that the encryption key is not solely a product of the passcode; you also have to know some piece of information stored only on the device (presumably, used as the “salt” for the PBKDF2 or other key-derivation function). Depending on the complexity of this piece of information, the problem could be put into the realm of “infeasible in human timeframes” if it cannot be obtained.

          Although it is worth noting that the salt is usually not considered sensitive information; it is just a countermeasure against pre-computed encryption keys (e.g. the “rainbow tables” attack, or the same password used at 2 different sites).

    5. The court is asking for forced labor, to build something that does not exist. They aren’t being asked to unlock one particular phone, Cruz is lying here as usual.

      1. Court orders often require people to do some work: find a piece of paper, run some software, drive back and forth, etc.

        Apple is trying to spin this as “building something that does not exist”, but that’s bullshit. The amount of work involved in complying with this order is probably less than that involved in many other court orders, and they can certainly push the update to just this one phone easily without pushing it to all other phones. Apple has the necessary infrastructure for that simply for testing their devices. The real issue here is that Apple devices have such a back door in the first place, namely that they can be decrypted by pushing an OS update to them.

        I don’t like Cruz’s position for political reason. But the guy being dishonest here is Cook, not Cruz.

    6. It’s involuntarily servitude plain and simple. The court order is not legal.

  26. “I know I’m being naive here, but can someone explain to me Apple’s legal case that they don’t have to comply with a court order?”

    Apple is being commanded but the court to create a product that does not currently exist and never intended to produce.

    1. Good point. It does seem a case of forced labor.

    2. That’s how Apple is trying to spin it, but that’s nonsense. Apple is being ordered to decrypt a device, apparently by pushing an OS update to it. That is not a lot of work and it is not a “new product”.

      Although in general, government orders to decrypt something are cause for concern, the bigger issue here is that Apple’s products have this back door in the first place. Apple isn’t defending a principled stand against government intrusion, they are covering up for the existence of a back door in their products.

  27. Is there any evidence to suggest that there is anything of any consequence on that phone, or is this just the type of fishing expedition that is specifically prohibited by the 4th?

    Be serious.

  28. So has there ever actually been a court case questioning a citizens “right to encrypt”?

    because it seems its coming down to that sooner or later.

    1. not the best source, but something

      US v Doe 2012 = court rules state cant compel someone to turn over password

      ‘””Requiring Doe to use a decryption password is most certainly more akin to requiring the production of a combination because both demand the use of the contents of the mind, and the production is accompanied by the implied factual statements [his knowledge of the existence and location of potentially incriminating files; his possession, control and access to them] that could prove to be incriminatory.”

      Commonwealth v. Gelfgatt (2012) = …“forcing someone to decrypt his computer is tantamount to forcing someone to “explain” information ? not simply produce evidence ? which violated the defendant’s Fifth Amendment and state constitutional right.”

      Of course, i suppose none of this matters when the owner is dead? The 5th amendment issues seems to be void.

      1. “PASSWORDX”

        “no, that didn’t work”

        “Try PASSWORDA”

        “that didn’t work either.”

        “What the heck? Don’t tell me I forgot my own password! Rats! Try PASSWORD1”

        “no luck”

        *repeat process until devices wipes itself.

        “Now I remember! PASSWORDFYTW”

    2. Well, there’s:
      The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.

      Also:

      The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.

      Ultimately, I would liken the right to encrypt with the right to put a lock on one’s door or the right to carry an opaque backpack/purse/briefcase/etc.

      Then again, the government has a compelling argument in its favor as well: FYTW. Historically, it’s been pretty successful in the courts.

      1. Interesting (maybe)… the courts looked at this same question back in October 2015… before the san berdoo shooters…

        “Magistrate Judge James Orenstein of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York released an order Friday that suggests he would not issue a ?government-sought order to compel the tech giant Apple to unlock a customer’s smartphone.

        But before he can rule, the judge said, he wants Apple to explain whether the government’s request would be “unduly burdensome.””

        …The national debate began last year when Apple started offering encryption on its newest smartphones that could be unlocked only by the device’s owner. That led FBI Director James B. Comey to say that such firms were deliberately allowing “people to place themselves beyond the law.”

        In his analysis, Orenstein rejected the government’s argument, which relies in part on a 1977 Supreme Court case involving the New York Telephone Company. That case applied a law dating to the Colonial era, the All Writs Act.

        basically = it looks like the Feds are just using the San Berdoo shooter’s phone to pursue the SAME EXACT demands they’ve been making on Apple for a year or more.

        Has anyone in the media noted this?

        1. “the Justice Department isn’t fighting over just this iPhone. Law enforcement agencies across the country are being thwarted by Apple’s encrypted devices, and the FBI likely chose this case?which involves an infamous terrorist?as its best chance to force Apple to change course.”

          the Govt believes it has the ability to force Apple to provide the tools to allow them to exercise its warrant under the “All Writs Act”, which gives courts the ability to compel private entities to act on their behalf unless “”they are “so far removed from the underlying controversy” or if would place an “unreasonable burden” “”

          “”The All Writs Act doesn’t allow government to conscript a company into service if the company doesn’t have the information ? If the FBI is doing an investigation, it can’t force the local locksmith to help it break into a house,””

          However, another judge has determined “All Writs” doesn’t apply in cases of encryption (which seems to be the same guy mentioned above)

          1. as per the EFF’s gloss from *October* (before the San Berdoo shootings happened)

            “Reengineering iOS and breaking any number of Apple’s promises to its customers is the definition of an unreasonable burden. As the Ninth Circuit put it in a case interpreting technical assistance in a different context, private companies’ obligations to assist the government have “not extended to circumstances in which there is a complete disruption of a service they offer to a customer as part of their business.” What’s more, such an order would be unconstitutional. Code is speech, and forcing Apple to push backdoored updates would constitute “compelled speech” in violation of the First Amendment. It would raise Fourth and Fifth Amendment issues as well. Most important, Apple’s choice to offer device encryption controlled entirely by the user is both entirely legal and in line with the expert consensus on security best practices. It would be extremely wrong-headed for Congress to require third-party access to encrypted devices, but unless it does, Apple can’t be forced to do so under the All Writs Act.”

      2. re: your citation of constitutional language

        as noted over the weekend = case law is what matters here

    3. This case has nothing to do with “the right to encrypt”.

      If Apple can decrypt the device without the key, it isn’t using secure encryption in the first place.

  29. Fuck Ted Cruz and that smarmy dickbag smirk he always has on his punchable face

  30. “I have examined the document quite diligently, and nowhere do I see a Constitutional Right to lock one’s doors or otherwise conceal one’s actions from the duly appointed authorities of the State.”

  31. Suppose there is only one person working at apple capable of producing the code needed to unlock this phone. If he/she resigns rather than product the code is the govt allowed to force him to do so in spite of not being employed by Apple? What if the person who takes his place attempts to write the code and screws it up thereby erasing the data on the phone? Are they criminally liable?

    Something else that comes to my mind is the govt.’s arrest of people owing student loans; i.e. taking civil cases and running them through the criminal courts. They are sending SWAT teams, goons with guns, to kidnap people and force them to enter into contracts under duress, something fundamentally contrary to basic law.

    This government is relying more and more on the fist instead of the brain, a tactic that will not end well for them.

    1. This is one of the more pernicious things the state does, that I am not sure gets enough attention. We all argue against the drug war, criminalizing prostitution, etc. anything that can be considered “victimless”. But, just like all these people that get shot because there is an arrest warratn for unpaid parking tickets, or other financial issues.

      It seems to me, that in and of itself, a civil violation should NEVER be able to automatically escalate into a criminal case. If you owe the govt money, it should be handled like any other financial claim: collections, put a lien on property, etc. Even if you owe back taxes, that should be a civil, not a criminal offense (even arguments against income tax notwithstanding). But we can thank the progressives for that shit, not just conservatives.

      1. The people who run the enforcement arms of government don’t really care to understand the difference between violations and crimes nor really between misdemeanors and felonies. They prefer meek compliance from the majority, but will escalate anything until they get their way or someone smacks them down (whether it be voters, the courts, another agency, or another level of government). And they are masters of doublethink, too. You could ask them what they think of debtors’ prison, and they would tell you it’s a terrible idea, as they’re hauling a guy to prison for failing to pay speeding tickets.

      2. Gov’t always turns to the use of (lethal) force because there are plenty of criminals who know they can simply ignore financial penalties until gov’t sends people with guns after them.

        If I knew that parking tickets could absolutely never escalate to a cop pulling a gun on me, I would never pay a parking ticket ever. They could pile on the fines and I’d just let them pile up.

        Now, that’s not all that bad. Considering that many gov’ts have unethically and immorally turned financial penalties into a steady and unjust revenue stream (such as civil asset forfeiture), the people SHOULD be willing to ignore financial penalties.

        But of course that is precisely the reason why gov’t needs to use lethal force–so they can actually succeed in stealing from the people.

        Put another way–a robber doesn’t hold up a bank with a banana that is in plain view of the bank teller. He either hides the banana and claims it is a gun or uses a real gun.

    2. Apple is trying to spin this as a complicated development project, but it isn’t. What they are being asked to do is fairly simple and lots of people could implement it. If they “screwed up” and erased the phone, the court would look into whether it was deliberate, and if so, punish them.

      The real issue here isn’t that they were ordered to do this, it’s that it is possible in the first place. Encryption that can be circumvented by an operating system upgrade is worthless. The fault here is entirely with Apple.

  32. Ted Cruz Says Apple Needs to Comply With the Court Order on Encrpytion, It’s All Constitutional
    Also calls himself a constitutionalist.

    Is Encrpytion something like Santorum?

  33. I feel like this is lawyer Cruz talking. He is basically saying appeal it and take it to a higher court, not really making a remark on the constitutionality of the order.

    1. Yes. Its a pretty novel situation.

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  35. I think this is actually a 13th Amendment case:

    Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction.

    Apple has not been convicted of any crime, nor has any of its developers, and so Apple and its developers cannot be subjected to involuntary servitude to develop a skeleton key for the feds.

    1. Apple has been trying to spin this as a major development effort, but that’s bullshit. What they are apparently being asked to do is to push an iOS update that contains a small bit of code that allows the courts to access this phone. The cost for complying with that is small.

      The real issue isn’t with the government demand for doing this, the real issue is that Apple can do this in the first place. If the security of their phones were any good, they shouldn’t be able to do this. The fact that they have to respond to the government with “we won’t do this” instead of “it’s impossible to do this” tells you that their security is worthless.

  36. If the encryption is any good Apple would have to know the phrase used to develop the key to decript the phone.

    The judge is an idiot.

    But I repeat myself.

  37. I’m reminded that Justice Robert Jackson once remarked in an opinion that:
    “The Constitution is not a suicide pact.”
    So, is it time to climb down from those High-Horses before nose-bleed sets in.

  38. What the discussion comes down to is that any phone that has encrypted data on it that the manufacturer can decrypt without the consent of the owner already has a back door in it. What they are talking about is whether Apple let’s the FBI use that existing back door or not. Although Apple makes it sound like this is some major software development effort, it is not; we’re probably talking a few hundred lines of code, less text than a subpoena. I think it is unlikely that Apple will be able to refuse to comply.

    Apparently, in Apple’s case, the back door consists of being able to push OS upgrades to the phone that allow the phone contents to be accessed without the user entering a key. That points to two big weaknesses in their system: first, the ability to push upgrades to phones without erasing them first, and second, the fact that the OS seems to be able to decrypt the data without any input from users.

    Apple: If you don’t want to be subject to court orders to decrypt the phones of people, don’t build in back doors.

    1. What they are talking about is whether Apple let’s the FBI use that existing back door or not.

      Wrong. There is no backdoor in the product. The FBI is demanding that Apple make a broken version of iOS that will let the FBI bypass the auto-delete feature that is invoked after too many failed login attempts.

      -jcr

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  41. Shane Harris at The Daily Beast reports that Apple has unlocked phones for authorities on at least 70 occasions in the last eight years.

    Bullshit. Harris is an ignoramus who has no idea WTF he’s talking about.

    http://techcrunch.com/2016/02/…..forcement/

    -jcr

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  43. Interesting how we always hear how the people have to comply and that all “court orders” are “constitutional.” Would be nice for once to hear a politician say the court is wrong and we don’t have to comply. Alas, the ruling class doesn’t ever seem to side with the people?

  44. What makes governments dangerous? Power.

    What does government surveillance do? Increases government power.

    “You have nothing to worry about if you have done nothing wrong.”

    That depends on who is defining what is wrong and what is right.

    Are political opponents doing something wrong?

    Are unfavorable news reporters or agencies doing something wrong?

    What happens when the President (any President) or his devotees, who can find out about anyone in the US, does not like someone and decides to do something about it; whether it be political or personal?

    Government officials seem oblivious that the potential for abuse from these programs is astronomical. We can not have government surveillance that in the hands of less than desirable government officials (which is most of them) can silence or destroy dissenters and political opposition.

    We already have a safe that can not be unlocked even with a Judge’s order, it is our mind. Governments have not had a master key or backdoor key to our minds since the beginning of time and we as a species have still managed to survive and multiple.

    It is not about why they pass such ridiculous laws or the purity of their intentions, it is about what some future demented politician might use these laws for.

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