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Drummer Boy

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Apple vs The FBI
« on: February 23, 2016, 03:25 »
I'm sure most of you are familiar with the story.

I'm curious to hear the perspective from those outside the U.S., and from those who are more technically in-the-know about such things.

There's a lot of noise being generated around this story (I decided to refrain from posting multiple links just yet), and I tend not to trust the motives behind much of it.

Thoughts?
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  • L'arri

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    Re: Apple vs The FBI
    « Reply #1 on: February 23, 2016, 10:19 »
    I'm sure most of you are familiar with the story.

    I'm curious to hear the perspective from those outside the U.S., and from those who are more technically in-the-know about such things.

    There's a lot of noise being generated around this story (I decided to refrain from posting multiple links just yet), and I tend not to trust the motives behind much of it.

    Thoughts?

    It's just the latest example of a clumsy attempt by a paranoid, johnny-come-lately government to force a private business to do its bidding long after the principles of freedom have been established by other tidal cultural and behavioural shifts. Perhaps the only difference is that this latest reactionary power grab is motivated by the sinister grumblings of a government-funded agency rather than a piqued multinational corporation.

    Democratic, so-called 'western' governments need to accept two things: firstly, that they can no longer exert the sort of control over people or businesses that they enjoyed until the end of the last century without being increasingly draconian. Secondly, there is no justification for interfering in people's privacy based on the proportionality of threat and response.

    Indeed, for me personally, there is absolutely no justification for unencryption, decryption or any other topical backdoor solution and I endorse Apple's position even while I somewhat doubt that company's integrity given that its first responsibility is to shareholders rather than people's privacy.
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    Re: Apple vs The FBI
    « Reply #2 on: February 23, 2016, 10:34 »
    It's just the latest example of a clumsy attempt by a paranoid, johnny-come-lately government to force a private business to do its bidding long after the principles of freedom have been established by other tidal cultural and behavioural shifts. Perhaps the only difference is that this latest reactionary power grab is motivated by the sinister grumblings of a government-funded agency rather than a piqued multinational corporation.

    Except that, from my understanding at least, at no point has the US Federal Government asked Apple to reprogram every iPhone in the world; to release a software patch with a backdoor or something of that ilk.

    This is little different from a law enforcement agency, in the US or anywhere else, legally obtaining a warrant to view your phone records, search your house or compare your DNA with a reference sample in the course of an investigation into suspected felonious conduct.

    Add into the mix that the suspect in question is a) not a suspect, because we know he did it, b) is a mass murderer, and therefore legitimately subject to law enforcement enquiries into his conduct, activities and contacts[1], and c) is dead - at which point his normal rights to privacy etc. are arguably lessened.

    The fear, I suppose, is one of setting a precedent... that is the US Government can force A Company to do this "just this one time", they can force Another Company to do it the next time. I think I'd rather have the UK Government be able to force Google and/or Motorola to release my data in the event that I become a mass murderer[2], than for them not to, and end up a victim.
     1. At this stage, let's not veer into discussion of his personal motives behind said mass murder
     2. Not currently my intention, for the record[1]
     1. Hi GCHQ, good to see you this morning
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    Drummer Boy

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    Re: Apple vs The FBI
    « Reply #3 on: February 23, 2016, 11:02 »
    What I have yet to discern from all of this is just what, exactly, the the Feds intend to do if Apple doesn't comply.

    Do they put Tim Cooke in prison? I can't seem to find anything pertaining to the specifics of possible punishment for Apple.

    Comply or else! That seems to be the mantra. The question being: Or else what?


    I do wonder how Steve Jobs would've handled this, and how his persona would've swayed public opinion one way or the other.
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  • cj2002

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    Re: Apple vs The FBI
    « Reply #4 on: February 23, 2016, 11:07 »
    What I have yet to discern from all of this is just what, exactly, the the Feds intend to do if Apple doesn't comply.

    Do they put Tim Cooke in prison? I can't seem to find anything pertaining to the specifics of possible punishment for Apple.

    Comply or else! That seems to be the mantra. The question being: Or else what?

    Well - it's a court order, so presumably failure to comply represents contempt of court at the least.

    Now, if the order was served against Cook, then he could go to prison. And while there have been legal interpretations of statutes (including the Constitution) that have ruled that corporations can be considered as "persons", you can't put a company in jail.

    My suspicion would be that any "or else what" questions would be much more subtle... just making life a little more difficult for the company.

    Or a big f***-off fine - that might be more in keeping with the current personality of the US Congress...[1]
     1. As well as being the go-to punishment from various European bodies when they don't get their way
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  • LukasCPH

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    Re: Apple vs The FBI
    « Reply #5 on: February 23, 2016, 11:50 »
    Well - it's a court order, so presumably failure to comply represents contempt of court at the least.
    They could put Tim Cook in jail, Newsroom-style ... :D
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    Re: Apple vs The FBI
    « Reply #6 on: February 23, 2016, 12:47 »
    This is all about the so-called 'terror threat'.

    These governments need to sip some of their own Kool Aid which is, as far as I can see, a weak beverage consisting of wrongheaded foreign policy topped off by a thick froth of media hype.

    Contrary to what they would have you believe, the scale of the threat is not at all proportionate to destroying the entire population's privacy. It isn't the criminals who suffer, it's all of us and that is what's disproportionate.
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  • Joelsim

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    Re: Apple vs The FBI
    « Reply #7 on: February 23, 2016, 13:05 »
    Maybe the govt should focus more on trying to educate their citizens that guns are dangerous.

    (esp given terrorism accounts for pretty much 0% of the crime in America)
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  • Drummer Boy

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    Re: Apple vs The FBI
    « Reply #8 on: February 23, 2016, 14:18 »
    I just watched a segment on the CBS morning show which featured Apple legal counsel, Ted Olson.

    What was strange about the "discussion" was how aggressive and assertive the hosts were towards Olson. Both Charlie Rose and Gayle King—both of whom are generally unflappable and very grounded—made no secret of their opposing viewpoint. It seems clear that the corporate agenda is under governmental influence (nothing new there) and that marching orders have been given.

    This is the aspect that I'm most curious to follow. The feds will likely get what the feds want, one way or another. How they go about that, though, will be most telling. I fear that not enough people are "reading between the lines" when presented with information from both sides. It's important to remember just who is driving the discussion, and for what reasons.

    I haven't yet taken a firm stance in this debate, as I'm still sorting through the propaganda from both sides, and trying to see the endgame of many different potential scenarios. But I am disturbed by the "anti-American" sentiment being cast upon Apple in some circles, and by how quickly all of this has become incendiary and political. I'm not the least bit surprised that it would unfold like this, but it's discouraging nonetheless.

    Interesting side note (and sad note) about Ted Olson:
    In addition to him being a former United States Solicitor General under George W. Bush (the person assigned to represent the government before the Supreme Court)...
    Quote
    Olson has been married four times. Olson's third wife, Barbara Olson, was a passenger on the hijacked American Airlines Flight 77 that was crashed into the Pentagon on September 11, 2001. Her original plan had been to fly to California on September 10, but she delayed until the next morning so that she could wake up with her husband on his birthday, September 11
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    Joelsim

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    Re: Apple vs The FBI
    « Reply #11 on: February 23, 2016, 21:08 »
    I just watched a segment on the CBS morning show which featured Apple legal counsel, Ted Olson.

    What was strange about the "discussion" was how aggressive and assertive the hosts were towards Olson. Both Charlie Rose and Gayle King—both of whom are generally unflappable and very grounded—made no secret of their opposing viewpoint. It seems clear that the corporate agenda is under governmental influence (nothing new there) and that marching orders have been given.

    This is the aspect that I'm most curious to follow. The feds will likely get what the feds want, one way or another. How they go about that, though, will be most telling. I fear that not enough people are "reading between the lines" when presented with information from both sides. It's important to remember just who is driving the discussion, and for what reasons.

    I haven't yet taken a firm stance in this debate, as I'm still sorting through the propaganda from both sides, and trying to see the endgame of many different potential scenarios. But I am disturbed by the "anti-American" sentiment being cast upon Apple in some circles, and by how quickly all of this has become incendiary and political. I'm not the least bit surprised that it would unfold like this, but it's discouraging nonetheless.

    Interesting side note (and sad note) about Ted Olson:
    In addition to him being a former United States Solicitor General under George W. Bush (the person assigned to represent the government before the Supreme Court)...

    That's the frenzy that's been whipped up by those disgusting Republican candidates. Murcans actually believe that every Muslim is a terrorist. Everyone who disagrees with that is anti-American.

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  • l29205

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    Re: Apple vs The FBI
    « Reply #12 on: February 23, 2016, 22:24 »
    That's the frenzy that's been whipped up by those disgusting Republican candidates. Murcans actually believe that every Muslim is a terrorist. Everyone who disagrees with that is anti-American.

    Well this shows your simple disregard for Americans, for that most polls point that the stats show about a 50/50 on the issue.  More then likely the next POTUS will be a democrat. The average American doesn't ask or care about their neighbors religion and that is the way it should be.  Believe in what you want but don't force it on anyone.

    On topic, Apple can crack the phone without issues to the rest of the iphone users.  If they can't they are failures with their own internal security if they think that the one off iOS they make make will get leaked the the rest of the world. 

    Should they no, because the current US judiciary gives out search warrants like a pervert in a van gives out candy to children.
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    Re: Apple vs The FBI
    « Reply #13 on: February 23, 2016, 23:44 »
    I dearly hope you're right about the Democrats, the vast majority of the U.K. has lost faith in America over the past 3 months with Trump, Cruz and Rubio's racist warmongering and vile rhetoric. If the R's get in then the British public will petition to end any special relationship with the US.

    With regard to Apple, they probably know full-well that hackers will get hold of the back door and it will cost them dearly.
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  • usedtobefast

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    Re: Apple vs The FBI
    « Reply #14 on: February 24, 2016, 01:07 »
    All the person at apple who is tasked with the iphone crack has to do, is not do it, but do it so it erases the data permanently. Whos going to know?
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    Re: Apple vs The FBI
    « Reply #15 on: February 24, 2016, 01:28 »

    On topic, Apple can crack the phone without issues to the rest of the iphone users.  If they can't they are failures with their own internal security if they think that the one off iOS they make make will get leaked the the rest of the world. 

    Should they no, because the current US judiciary gives out search warrants like a pervert in a van gives out candy to children.

    absolutely.

    Apple CAN create what the Feds are asking for.

    The question is - where does it end?   If they do that this time, in this instance .... next time it wont be so clear.  Next time the government asks for someone else, and someone else and someone else ... the reasons get more and more bogus.

    It is a slippery slide.
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  • Drummer Boy

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    Re: Apple vs The FBI
    « Reply #16 on: February 24, 2016, 01:45 »
    Here's what I predict to be the next move:

    A more serious terror-type event occurs, or the imminent threat of such an act is made public, and this is used as heavy leverage against Apple to unlock their phones. Media outrage will instantly assume DEFCON 1 levels of hysteria. The beloved Apple will, overnight, become Enemy Number One in the fight of Good vs Evil.

    You heard it here first.
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  • Francois the Postman

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    Re: Apple vs The FBI
    « Reply #17 on: February 24, 2016, 02:01 »
    Who needs backdoors when people themselves open the front doors as wide as they do?

    The FBI should just buy Farmville and Candy Crush as the terms and conditions of most games give the makers the sort of access levels that leave very little to the imagination. 'Accept' just seems to mean 'next', for most people.

    All joking aside,

    I haven't this followed totally up close, but where I am usually hyper allergic when it comes to privacy and most certainly the grumpy old git in the none-of-your-business room, if there is a court order for a single case (one of clear-cut terrorism at that), I have no sympathy for Apple's stance at all (at least that bit rolls of the tongue a lot more natural).

    I am at the opposite end when it comes to whole-sale fishing expeditions. This really ain't one.

    Insisting that the state has no right to go fishing only works if you have a properly rightful route to gain acess if it is deemed an appropriate exception. Which should be independently verified, hence through court order only. If you also start ignoring request that have actually walked that route though, you in effect give the FBI a real excuse to invent its own procedures and decide what is appropriate and not without oversight. In absense of a better alternative.

    If the state would be unable to gain access even in a case like this, armed with a court order, you might as well do away with the only-via-the-courts process, as when would it become 'proper then'?

    At the same time, if Apple can appeal, that is its legal right too, so I have no issue with the appeal, as long as they comply with -what I suspect- will be the inevitable outcome of that for this case.

    But if you are gonna pick a principled fight, this one is a bizarre one, from my pov. Especially if its pretty damn clear from the way you have opened the snooping floodgates through the way apps can request access, actual privacy of your users is the last thing on your commercial mind.

    Apple, if privacy is actually this sacred to you, why does the EU need to keep raising concerns with you about the way you actually handle your current legal privacy obligations to EU citizens?

    Google, Facebook, Microsoft et all: ditto.
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  • Drummer Boy

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    Re: Apple vs The FBI
    « Reply #18 on: February 24, 2016, 04:03 »
    Apple, if privacy is actually this sacred to you, why does the EU need to keep raising concerns with you about the way you actually handle your current legal privacy obligations to EU citizens?

    Google, Facebook, Microsoft et all: ditto.
    I've always found this most interesting, that the EU (it seems) is much more proactive in protecting personal privacy. The various lawsuits, etc, against the above mentioned tech companies will usually make the news in the U.S., but only as a side-topic, and not one that ever generates much interest to the man-on-the-street. It's not a topic that I've ever heard come up in conversation.

    I suspect that this is due to there being a blind spot in the American consciousness. I don't think most people really want to fully consider just how invasive these companies have become. When members of the EU are holding the likes of Google and Facebook to a higher standard than the U.S., that should set off alarm bells for Americans. But I truly believe that many people probably just assume (if they give it any thought at all) that whatever is happening "over there" must be different from what goes on here. In other words: If these giant tech companies are somehow violating people's rights in Europe, it's probably because they're doing things differently in those countries from how they do things here in the U.S. And Google, Facebook and Apple are our friends, aren't they? They give us free things like Google and Facebook. And why should they have to be so nice to those European countries anyway?

    Hey, did you see the new font Google is using for their logo? Big news!  :cool
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  • L'arri

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    Re: Apple vs The FBI
    « Reply #19 on: February 24, 2016, 06:53 »
    Hard not to be pessismistic.

    Consumer tech is like a drug addiction except that, if one goes cold turkey, it's not actually so bad. But people just gotta have their apps. Gimme gimme gimme. And that, along with the parchment scroll of terms and conditions they'll blindly click through to get to the good stuff, means they'll pretty much roll over on privacy.

    Meanwhile the board at Apple will ask itself how much this may affect Apple's stock position. I'm not sure the markets will care what the government wants in this case and the markets decide everything nowadays.
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  • Joelsim

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    Re: Apple vs The FBI
    « Reply #20 on: February 24, 2016, 09:57 »


    The FBI should just buy Farmville and Candy Crush as the terms and conditions of most games give the makers the sort of access levels that leave very little to the imagination. 'Accept' just seems to mean 'next', for most people.



    And the FBI will then be able to junkmail everyone in the world about their new branded jackets, just $59.99.

    Available in XXXXL and XXXXXL only.

     :shh
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  • Drummer Boy

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    Re: Apple vs The FBI
    « Reply #21 on: February 24, 2016, 12:50 »
    Then there's the other side of this. Although the analogy may be unfair, I find myself wondering what if...

    Apple produced a vehicle (notwithstanding the fact that they are, in fact, developing a self-driving car) that was super secure. In the interest of personal protection, this vehicle was virtually unstoppable—bullet-proof, waterproof, all-terrain-ready, and with a top speed that would make McLaren blush. The 007 dream car, if you will.

    The selling point to the consumer would be access to heretofore unseen adventures in far off places, all while being able to make it back home safely, and in time for supper with the family. In an increasingly dangerous world, carjackers, kidnappers and terrorists be damned. You now had the freedom to travel where, and when you wanted.

    The obvious flip side to this would be the nefarious use of such a vehicle by those seeking to harm us. Suppose law enforcement and security agencies insisted on a way to stop this car in its tracks—but only if the driver was doing something bad, or highly suspected of doing something bad. What should the response be?

    If Apple made available a way to virtually disarm this car's security features, it would likely only be a matter of time before terrorists, carjackers and other assorted criminals were able to take advantage of this, thereby eliminating one of the vehicle's main selling points.

    Now, there's a reason that tanks aren't allowed to be used as commuter vehicles. Sure, it would be an awesomely secure way to pass through gang-controlled neighborhoods, and probably a good choice if confronted with a tornado, flood or landslide—and those things do happen, and people do die as a result of not being fully protected.  But then there's always this guy...


    So there is a point at which too much personal security becomes unreasonable when weighed against the reasonable expectations for safety of the general public. But where is that line?

    People love their guns in this country, and there are more people carrying concealed weapons than I care to think about. But point a gun at a cop, and you're likely to be shot dead. Buy your guns; keep your guns; carry your guns. But try to do something bad with a gun, and those in charge of protecting the rest of us will usually do what they can to stop you.

    So what if someone is trying to do something bad with an iPhone? Should law enforcement be able to stop that? And let's not kid ourselves here, you can do a lot of bad things with an iPhone if you chose to. Photo reconnaissance, GPS coordinates, remote control, logistical command—it's a saboteurs dream machine. All of us now have immediate and unimpeded access to levels of information that only a short time ago were limited to only those with the very highest level of security clearance.

    Satellite photography with the ability to zoom in close enough to recognize individual homes?  :o

    The Carter administration did their best to hide the fact that such a thing was even possible from the Soviets. And that was in my lifetime. These days, I'm able to tell you what color your front door is, thanks to Google street view.

    (Btw, L'arri, you may want to touch up that blue trim.  :shh  :P)

    High quality and instant video communication from around the world in the palm of your hand? It didn't even exist 10 years ago. The creators of Star Trek (the original being the only one worthy of the name, btw) weren't even so bold as to suggest such a thing. And yet here we are.

    But this magical iPhone device also leaves traces of everything that it does! Making it irresistible to those trying to thwart evil efforts from occurring in the first place or in the future.

    So does Apple really have the right to dictate the extent to which it's customers can take advantage of all that the digital world currently has to offer, regardless of the customers intentions?

    It is a slippery slope indeed. I don't have the answers myself though.

    ---------------------------------
    I use the gun laws, etc, only as an illustration of a larger point. It anyone wants to discuss the NRA, or U.S. crime rates, etc, please do so in another thread. Seriously.
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  • Francois the Postman

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    Re: Apple vs The FBI
    « Reply #22 on: February 24, 2016, 13:52 »
    Quote
    So does Apple really have the right to dictate the extent to which it's customers can take advantage of all that the digital world currently has to offer, regardless of the customers intentions?

    Apple isn't the highest thing in the pyramid. Our laws are.

    So no.

    Our laws dictate the extent to which it's customers can take advantage of all that the digital world currently has to offer, and products have to comply with lawful dictats.

    Apple can dictate to the point that our laws allow it, and people accept the agreement (not that you have practically speaking much of a choice here, or that your initial user agreement remains in place as such).

    It's becoming a rather silly world if a company starts to place itself above the law and cites 'commercial interests' as the excuse for doing that.


    If democarcy is the best system in absense of something better, targeted and justifiable governmental breaches of privacy with court orders only is probably the same.


    It's no surpise that the EU is more proactive in the privacy realm.

    The right to guns in the US has something to do with a collective trauma that is centuries old. And look how deeply rooted and important it still is.

    The right to privacy (and why it matters) in parts of the EU has something to do with far more recent traumas, WWII and East Block dictatorships. People were going around blowing up information registrars during WWII for obvious reasons. And ask someone in East Germany about their initial response to wholesale snooping on citizens...

    I have lived in the NL and in the UK. In general, the awareness of, and importance placed on the privacy realm is different. One country has been occupied in the past and lived underneath 'registered personal information' abuse on a monstrous scale, the other has not, it 'just' fought it in realive freedom.

    Naturally, with the passing of time, attitudes in the occupied territories (for most) are relaxing too. It's an interesting process to observe.

    The information and technology giants have become bigger than nations, so have many other companies. If the only argument for the EU was having something powerful enough to keep these giants in check for the enlightened benefit of their citizens, I would be willing to put up with an awful lot of sh*te that comes with having it (and I do).

    The US will never do it. China .... lol. So yeah, for me the EU has value well above what else it does (some good, some inconsequential or inefficient, some bad). The EU really is our last big and effective law-making and law-enforcing line of defence in a privacy battle that has been stacked in favour of big business already. But let's really annoyed about cucumbers.
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  • « Last Edit: February 24, 2016, 14:05 by Francois the Postman »

    hiero

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    Re: Apple vs The FBI
    « Reply #23 on: February 26, 2016, 02:42 »
    (1)Apple isn't the highest thing in the pyramid. Our laws are.

    So no.

    (2)Our laws dictate the extent to which it's customers can take advantage of all that the digital world currently has to offer, and products have to comply with lawful dictats.


     . . .

    (3)The right to guns in the US has something to do with a collective trauma that is centuries old. And look how deeply rooted and important it still is.

    (4)The right to privacy (and why it matters) in parts of the EU has something to do with far more recent traumas, WWII and East Block dictatorships. People were going around blowing up information registrars during WWII for obvious reasons. And ask someone in East Germany about their initial response to wholesale snooping on citizens...

     . . .

    By the number then, for ease.

    (1)Incorrect. In the US explicitly, and in the UK implicitly, the top of the pyramid is not the laws, but the people. The modern embodiment of Plato's polis. And civil disobedience is an entitlement, although the consequences, inside the agreed on system of law, must then also be endured.

    (2) Again, incorrect.[1] The laws are nowhere near "caught up" with the information revolution that has occurred since the advent of mobile phones and the internet. The legal system, at this time, is relying on the precedents set in the earlier "information revolution" that occurred with the advent of telephones and radio. Personally, I think the precedents are adequate, but it is patently obvious that very few people actually understand these precedents and what they mean today. I will come back to this point shortly.

    (3) I disagree. I'm not sure I want to get involved in THIS topic, but here: It is my firm conviction that the current obsession with gun rights in the US has less to do with the Revolutionary War than it does with a cultural hijacking of this as an emotional, persuasive method to discount certain political segments of the population. Today's obsession is firmly rooted in the Vietnam era. I think that perhaps the best contrasts are exemplified by Aus and Canada. Both English speaking, both similar culturally, similar 20th century history, different current outcomes.

    (4) Concur. Nail on the head. Spot on.

    Now back to the whole Apple vs FBI thing. The problem is that this is NOT a one-off situation, nor can it be made into a one-off situation. What many people fail to realize, is that our governments, our law enforcement, ALL those agencies, have had a personal private information Golden Age since about 1990. They have had access to information that, due to the technological limitations, was absolutely considered private before this technology existed. As a matter of fact, law enforcement had access in ways that had been explicitly limited by the courts previously! (Phone tapping laws, have to have a search warrant, all that) At least, in the US. By the same token, I am not sure how many fully honest conversations I had with my Russian friends. They were conditioned to always be aware that someone might be listening. I know I would certainly not send them any emails with my true and honest thinking about their current events. At least, not since the 2nd election of Putin. That kind of cinched it.

    Anyway, here is a useful article on the topic: http://arstechnica.com/apple/2016/02/heres-how-apple-would-build-crypto-cracking-software-for-the-fbi/

    Apple would not be aiding the FBI in a one-time search. They would be permanently breaking the encryption for anybody who wanted to get in. It would only be a matter of time before kiddie script exploits were available to take advantage of whatever break Apple produced.

     1. I have to soften this stance, based in part on the Macworld article that Drummer Boy links to in the post following mine. It is apparent, in that article, that there has been some attention by US legislative bodies to the current communication environment. However, I am pretty sure I am quite safe in maintaining that such attention is still decades behind the times.
  • ReplyReply
  • « Last Edit: February 26, 2016, 16:18 by hiero, Reason: revision and add footnote »
    Eeyore sez . . .

    Drummer Boy

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    Re: Apple vs The FBI
    « Reply #24 on: February 26, 2016, 14:38 »
    Here are some interesting highlights from the legal filing against Apple, as well as the 65-page file itself, for those so inclined.

    The 5 biggest reveals from Apple's motion to dismiss the FBI's court order

    This first one is worth sharing.
    Quote
    1. GovtOS would take 10 Apple engineers four weeks to create

    Apple outlined all the resources required to create the hackable version of iOS, which the company refers to “GovtOS.” Because such software does not currently exist, Apple will have to create it from scratch, as opposed to simply tweaking its latest version of iOS. That will require six to ten Apple engineers and employees working for at least two weeks—but more likely up to four weeks. Apple will have to write new code, design and test new functionalities, and prepare documentation and procedures.

    Furthermore, Apple will either have to create a brute-force tool to enter passcodes, or help the FBI build it. Once GovtOS is created, the software will have to go through Apple’s quality assurance and security testing. And Apple will have to record exactly how all of this was developed in case it ever comes up in court. To top it off, “if the new operating system has to be destroyed and recreated each time a new order is issued, the burden will multiply.”
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  • Francois the Postman

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    Re: Apple vs The FBI
    « Reply #25 on: February 26, 2016, 19:41 »
    By the number then, for ease.

    (1)Incorrect. In the US explicitly, and in the UK implicitly, the top of the pyramid is not the laws, but the people. The modern embodiment of Plato's polis. And civil disobedience is an entitlement, although the consequences, inside the agreed on system of law, must then also be endured.

    Well, that's semantics Hiero. The law is "of the people". So yeah. I think we agree.

    People have the right to change laws, but they are certainly subject to them whilst they are in place. So when you are talking about what is at the top, Apple doesn't define what is legal to make, but "the laws(/treaties) of the people" do. 

    Simply because you can make it, that doesn't mean you are legally entitled to (and/or sell it).

    We are perfectly able to create laser pens that can blind pilots. In several countries you cannot sell them.

    If Apple can create software that is incrackable, that still doesn't mean it should exist. It depends on the will of the people and that might be different from country to country.

    I can block out any mobile phone around me from getting a signal. That the technology exist doesn't mean it should be avaialable.

    I agree our laws are well out of date when it comes to technology and privacy. But that doesn't mean that the rules in place (the laws of the land) are invalid.

    And if you have an issue, there are the courts. Asking Government to rule is wrong too, to me. You ask the courts to rule and government to change laws, if you don't think the rulings make sense.

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  • hiero

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    Re: Apple vs The FBI
    « Reply #26 on: February 27, 2016, 15:07 »
    Well, that's semantics Hiero. The law is "of the people". So yeah. I think we agree.

    People have the right to change laws, but they are certainly subject to them whilst they are in place. So when you are talking about what is at the top, Apple doesn't define what is legal to make, but "the laws(/treaties) of the people" do. 

    Simply because you can make it, that doesn't mean you are legally entitled to (and/or sell it).

    We are perfectly able to create laser pens that can blind pilots. In several countries you cannot sell them.

    If Apple can create software that is incrackable, that still doesn't mean it should exist. It depends on the will of the people and that might be different from country to country.

    I can block out any mobile phone around me from getting a signal. That the technology exist doesn't mean it should be avaialable.

    I agree our laws are well out of date when it comes to technology and privacy. But that doesn't mean that the rules in place (the laws of the land) are invalid.

    And if you have an issue, there are the courts. Asking Government to rule is wrong too, to me. You ask the courts to rule and government to change laws, if you don't think the rulings make sense.

    Ok. I'll stand down on that point. Well argued, sir.

    And your final point is exactly what Apple is doing, yes?
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  • Francois the Postman

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    Re: Apple vs The FBI
    « Reply #27 on: February 27, 2016, 20:19 »
    Yeah, it feels odd they insist on government to make a ruling, when they are sitting on a court order.

    If Apple has an issue with what the FBI is asking as a result of getting a court order, you go to a higher court until you get the final ruling in that chain, and you abide by it, whether you like it or not. That's the system we have in place. Apple ain't above it.

    They are walking that process, and as I have stated right at the start, I have no issue with that all. I just find the quality of their  arguments 'against', so far, weak and their trump argument ('courts should not decide, politicians should') downright bizarre.

    You don't go to the politicians to rule on legality (and with Apple & Co's lobbying powers, that is asking yourself to some extent, kinda). We have a separation of powers for a reason. That being one of them.

    I don't accept that Apple couldn't (and shouldn't) comply with a court order in a reasonable way.

    I don't accept that Apple can't find a way to access that data (that is repeatable for any other incidental request).

    I don't accept that Apple can't propose a system that it considers pretty damn crack-proof, all the more since we have existed for decades with crackable technology and people and business did quite well with that, or created additional layers that were needed.

    I might accept that Apple has a point about the FBI asking for more than is warranted, if I knew all the details. But then it is still for Apple to co-operate in a reasonable way (but then at least propose an alternative and let a judge decide if it is reasonable enough). Don't just say "no, let's bypeass the laws and get a hands up" from a group that is specifacly excluded from holding hands up about the actual legallity of events.

    One bloody key that (only) Apple sits on and an OS that needs a version of it depending on conditions that Apple sets. For all I care the phone explodes if it is done incorrectly, Apple can always enter correctly on their first attempt.

    We have created a Trump-proof system that keeps our nuclear arsenal safe. Chinese emperors burried entire armies without anyone knowing where it was done centuries ago. If Apple cannot think of a way to create a cryptological answer which requires far less people in a loop, in an era where we have machines that can cope with a gazillion computations, only requires one key to be kept safe (inhouse I propose) for exceptional circumstances, and with only one attempt to get it right, then 'the brightest minds they have access too' really aren't as clever as they claim to be.

    I agree that they should not create a key and an unlock mechanism, and hand it over to the FBI. I agree that it should only be used in exceptional circusmtances. The FBI should always come to them with a court order and let Apple open its own front door, period. I very very very much agree that fishing expeditions are no go zones. I agree that globally the secret services have completely lost the plot when it it comes to what is a legal operation under the spirit of the law.

    But when the FBI shows up with a court order (search warrant), and it is about a single phone owned by a proven terrorist after the crime has been commited... if that doesn't meet your 'justifiable expectation threshold' which is also enshrined in the laws that create the expectation of privacy, why define the exception in the first place, as there isn't much commitable that goes above that.

    If Apple thinks what the FBI asks is not in line with the court order, and it has an alternative proposal, fine, take that to court and let them rule.

    I want the FBI to do two things. Try to keep us safe by figuring out what we don't know (legally) -which involves endless amount of foggy variables- and investigate what we do know to the fullest (legally) -which in this case involves one very defined starting point.

    The FBI made its case to the court and got an order.

    If we obstruct legally allowed access to very specificly identified fruitful fishing ponds, we really have no argument if the likes of the FBI push the boat out on more and more elaborate fishing expeditions in the fog that involves all of us. It's one or the other, if  we at the same time require that the FBI keeps us safe.

    If Apple feels the laws need updating, yup, no argument. But concerned about privacy... Apple? Since when?

    If they think privacy matters, ask the EU how the likes of Apple actually deal with the EU laws that define their legal obligations and respect for the law-enshrined privacy entitlements of EU citizens.
     
    They don't care about our privacy, this is about their commercial interest, which is related to the commercial value of near-total security. And feeling big enough to ignore the law(s) on our global books. Dressed up as a privacy battle, so we feel they are the good guys.

    Smoke and mirrors. And billions.

    If the laws change, their lobbyists will help rewrite them, as our senile tech-illiterate switch-the-internet-off politicians are very keen to fascilitate this sort of help in exchange for campaign support, etc. I sometimes wonder what I would prefer more, current laws or rewritten ones by lobbyists.

    I suspect I would wave goodbye forever to several privacy powers and entitlements that I currently have (especially in-the-spirit-ones), and see them levered over to the big-business interest column, tbh.
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  • « Last Edit: February 28, 2016, 04:51 by Francois the Postman »

    AG

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    Re: Apple vs The FBI
    « Reply #28 on: February 27, 2016, 23:39 »
    yeah the more I have read, the more I am leaning towards the government on this one.

    To be honest, I simply dont believe that

    a) - it would take them that many man hours
    b) - that they need to do the quality assurance/documentation to repeat etc.

    They are not providing a court with the process.  They dont have to tell ANYONE how they did it.  They simply have to hack the individual phone, and give the info ON THE PHONE to the FBI.  They dont have to tell the FBI how they did it.  They dont have to push it out to everyone.   

    I simply do not believe that Apple could not hack their own phone now wihtout the need to build anything
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  • Drummer Boy

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    Re: Apple vs The FBI
    « Reply #29 on: March 02, 2016, 12:32 »
    I don't know enough about the topic to assess this side of the story, but for those more informed on such things, I'd love to get your perspective. Politics aside (and really, let's leave John McAfee political leanings out of this thread), he raises some interesting points.

    JOHN MCAFEE: I'll decrypt the San Bernardino phone free of charge so Apple doesn't need to place a back door on its product

    Quote
    With all due respect to Tim Cook and Apple, I work with a team of the best hackers on the planet. These hackers attend Defcon in Las Vegas, and they are legends in their local hacking groups, such as HackMiami. They are all prodigies, with talents that defy normal human comprehension. About 75% are social engineers. The remainder are hardcore coders. I would eat my shoe on the Neil Cavuto show if we could not break the encryption on the San Bernardino phone. This is a pure and simple fact.
    Quote
    And why do the best hackers on the planet not work for the FBI? Because the FBI will not hire anyone with a 24-inch purple mohawk, 10-gauge ear piercings, and a tattooed face who demands to smoke weed while working and won't work for less than a half-million dollars a year. But you bet your ass that the Chinese and Russians are hiring similar people with similar demands and have been for many years. It's why we are decades behind in the cyber race.
    Quote
    So here is my offer to the FBI. I will, free of charge, decrypt the information on the San Bernardino phone, with my team. We will primarily use social engineering, and it will take us three weeks. If you accept my offer, then you will not need to ask Apple to place a back door in its product, which will be the beginning of the end of America. 
    :o

    Is it really that easy (for them)? :slow

    Here's the man himself speaking about it.
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