I was quick to condemn the courts forcing Apple to create a backdoor. I couldn’t imagine any situation where it would be justified…or maybe I could?
Yesterday I drove home thinking: there really are no legitimate circumstances where this judgement could stand. And many are siding with Apple but one provided a balanced response which gave me pause:
It suddenly flashed through my mind that there may be one exception: If one of my little girls had gone missing and her iPhone contained the only clue to her whereabouts. Let me first pray ?? and knock on wood ✊? that it will never happen. But if it did, I would move heaven and earth … and most likely beg Apple to unlock her phone.
I’m a big proponent of privacy because it creates trust. When Apple introduced Touch ID, I was hoping for the end of password tyranny and the dawn of a more considerate and secure digital age. Any large institution, with the power to invade my privacy at any given time, must honor my basic human rights.
That’s easy to say when it is just my life. Amber alerts set a precedent that gave authorities extraordinary powers including the ability to send everyone’s an SMS, even if their number was private. It might be worth considering alternate ways to provide access to, at the very least, loved ones to retrieve critical information under certain conditions.
In his Message to customers, Apple’s CEO Tim Cook eloquently explains why their smartest engineers designed security into the iPhone. In that same spirit and passion, I hope Apple have Legal engineers design ways to resolve ethical issues into its products. Coding security is possible, now let us give morality encryption a try. Inevitably, the Future of Law should have us moving from Courts to Code and Apple can lead the way.
I hope brighter minds than mine will ponder and prevail in this dilemma. So while Apple’s backdoor may seem unlawful, having no exception will feel as awful.
Meanwhile, I’ll work on creating enough trust between me and my angels, that they’ll let me know their password.