Threats of children being kidnapped apparently weren’t enough to get concerned parents to force Apple to cut back on the encryption the company employs on its iOS devices, so the Department of Justice is taking its rhetoric up another notch. Now the message is: Apple’s tough encryption is going to get a child killed! (Cue the ominous music. – Ed.)
A Wall Street Journal report says a Department of Justice official actually told Apple executives during a meeting last month that the company could some day be directly responsible for the death of a child.
The DoJ says that some day a criminal – let’s say some who has, oh… I don’t know… kidnapped a child – will be able to hide themselves from Big Brother by using Apple’s encrypted iOS devices in his nefarious schemes. Law enforcement officials will be unable to access the information on the perp’s phone, which will allow them to evade capture, and… KILL THE CHILD!
Apple executives are reported to have termed the government’s latest rhetoric in its war on individual privacy as “inflammatory,” and pointed out the DoJ could acquire the needed information to save the child in peril via other sources, such as a cellular carrier.
Apple’s increased encryption and security on its iOS devices comes as a result of the public furor last year when it was revealed that government agencies, including the NSA, had obtained backdoor access to iOS devices, and were using it to spy on users.
Apple’s move was to up the encryption on their devices via updates to iOS, and even creating a website detailing its commitment to privacy.
The government has now played their trump card, the one marked: “It’s for the children!” So, we can now expect to see rioting in the streets, or at least some strongly worded tweets from the parties who can benefit from inflammatory situations such as these. If this doesn’t work, we can only expect that threats against the lives of our puppies and kittens will be next.