Apple vs the FBI

Comparto un escrito de Alec Ross, quien trabajó en la Casa Blanca, sobre la situación entre Apple y el FBI sobre si Apple debe poner en juego la seguridad de su tecnología y darle acceso al FBI para que pueda extraer data del iPhone de un terrorista.

I believe that liberty without security is fragile and security without liberty is oppressive.

However, I also believe that the FBI’s assertion that it needs Apple to break its technology in the name of security actually makes the United States and the rest of the world less secure, not more secure.

Let’s be clear about what the FBI is asking. They want Apple to hack its own product by building an entirely new version of its iOS software and they want it to deliberately have security holes and weakened encryption so that the FBI can access the data on iPhones.

If Apple does this, then the idea that only the FBI will be able to exploit this new vulnerability is naïve. By mandating that companies undermine their own encryption, it opens vulnerabilities that weaken the integrity of security systems for everyone.

If a backdoor is built for the FBI, then I believe that the door is also open for the Chinese, the Russians, and for non-state based hackers to enter, too.

What’s more, if US policy requires mandatory assistance from companies to break encryption, it is certain that other countries will demand the same on the same precedent. And unlike the United States, their motives will not necessarily be bound by the rule of law. This puts American companies in an impossible position.

The FBI is not acting with malignant intent. This is no longer J. Edgar Hoover’s FBI. However, by trying to solve a short-term problem (accessing the contents of a single terrorist’s iPhone) they are creating a much bigger, long-term problem: opening access to once secure systems.

As more of our life is connected to the cloud, the idea that mandatory backdoors are built-in is a nightmare. In my book The Industries of the Future, I argue that as we store things like our medical records to the cloud, that we must make sure those systems are encrypted and secure. This means no mandatory backdoors.

For these reasons and others, intelligence agencies including the NSA and GCHQ have come out clearly in favor of strong encryption with no backdoors. Law enforcement has other methods to get access to data other than mandating decryption.

For all of our security, let’s hope that Apple prevails on this issue and the FBI does not.

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