February 19, 2016

Apple Bites

Filed under: Probable Cause — Tags: — Bill @ 4:08 pm

AppleCore copyBy now most readers probably know that the US Department of Justice sought and received a federal court’s order directing Apple to help in preserving and extracting the encrypted information on the San Berdo Two‘s iPhone 5c.

Apple’s CEO, Tim Cook, refused to comply with the court order.

Today the DoJ filed a motion to compel Apple to comply with the first order.  Here is the Motion to Compel filed by the government today.

It addresses two major concerns voiced by Cook.  The first concern is that Apple would have to devise a method to access the information; the ability to do that was not part of the process.  The second concern was that the method would make vulnerable all certain models of Apple iPhones, not just the individual phone seized in the San Bernardino incident.

The government points out in the motion that Apple has already acknowledged it can devise a method to access the information; Apple can comply with the first order.

The government also explains how the method will remain in the hands of Apple and not be turned over to the government or any other party.  The government asserts those safeguards should be sufficient to satisfy Apple.

It seems to us that both Apple and the government have reasonable concerns and objectives, and we hope that the Court will find a way to enable Apple to comply with the Court’s order while at the same time preserving Apple’s proprietary interest in its intellectual property.


  1. I can understand a court order for something that exist, but an order to invent something seems like a little overreach, then when invented how do you put the Genie bank in the bottle.
    As once said by an as yet unknown author “Those that would trade freedom for security deserve neither”.

    Comment by Mike Teague — February 22, 2016 @ 9:03 am

  2. Mike,

    I’m eager to read Apple’s response to the Motion to Compel.

    At least at an emotional level, Apple can make a fair argument that for years the “G” has been urging private industry to make their products less susceptible to outside attack.

    At the same time, I’m unwilling to accept Apple’s assertion that what the “G” wants to do isn’t possible. I do believe that like many companies’ engineers, executives, and marketing people, Apple’s own may be blind to the vulnerabilities of their own products. Denying your product is vulnerable to external attack or exploitation may make for good marketing, but it is often a false denial. It it seems to me that Apple would benefit from working with the “G” to find any exploitable vulnerability before the ChiComs or the Russians do — and they are definitely looking.

    Comment by Bill — February 22, 2016 @ 9:26 am

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