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Old 02-20-2016, 02:59 AM   #101
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If Apple is forced to do this, they'll be forced to do other things perpetually by all govts.

The national security apparatus has demonstrated they can't be trusted.

Appeal it all the way to the SCOTUS, which could take years. That's a good use of shareholder money in the opinion of this shareholder.
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Old 02-20-2016, 05:32 AM   #102
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Yes, the court order allows authorities to access private property. It does not allow the authorities to compel someone else to access that property on their behalf.
An interesting article in Ars Technica describing the DoJ's application of the "All Writs Act" of 1789 and how it may indeed legitimize their request to Apple Inc. How Apple will fight the DOJ in iPhone backdoor crypto case | Ars Technica
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In the present San Bernardino case, US Attorney Eileen Decker specifically cited New York Telephone's "three factor" test. Those factors include the company’s distance, or "remove" from the case; whether the government’s request places an "undue burden" on Apple; and whether the company’s assistance was "necessary."
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Old 02-20-2016, 08:57 AM   #103
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So, you say you have nothing to hide?

....

Privacy is a basic human need
. You really have nothing to hide? You won't mind if we install these cameras in your bedroom and bathroom, then. Don't worry, under the current rules only select agents will have access to the camera feeds. And we promise not to keep the recordings too long...
It's easy to promote your view (or shoot down other views) if you selectively ignore what was said. It seems you are creating a straw man here.

I said I have nothing to hide, yes, but the context was that I have no problem violating the privacy of suspected criminals with proper warrants/authorizations. That does not mean - 'yeah, put cameras in my house (or access my cameras), and anybody can do do whatever they want with the feed 24/7/365. I don't care.'.

As far as a bad government and/or bad laws - that can happen regardless. If they wanted to target me, they wouldn't need any high tech to do it, in fact, it's probably easier w/o the tech - good old fashioned abuse.

Let's take technology out of the picture for a second - are search warrants abused today? Yes, I'm sure there are cases of it. But I don't know anyone who was abused by this - it isn't rampant (but any abuse is wrong). So do we 100% take away law enforcement's ability to obtain a search warrant because of some problems in the system? Would the public benefit from that?

I feel we should be trying to fix those problems/abuses, rather than take helpful tools away from law enforcement because of the possibilities for abuse. Take that to it's logical end, we would not give police guns, or a ticket book (they might use it to 'pin' a moving violation on me!). Any power can be abused, we need to weigh the pros/cons and work to correct any problems.

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Old 02-20-2016, 09:00 AM   #104
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If Apple is forced to do this, they'll be forced to do other things perpetually by all govts...
I would not worry about other governments forcing Apple to do anything. A totalitarian state would just not allow sales and use of Apple products on its soil. And invasion of privacy of a phone is the least worry of the people in some of those places, where mere playing of foreign music earns the victim a death sentence.

So, I only care about due process, and avoidance of abuse here in the US.
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Old 02-20-2016, 09:21 AM   #105
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It turns out that I could not snooze either...

FBI hacked your alarm clock?
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Old 02-20-2016, 09:41 AM   #106
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No, not yet. It would be more worthwhile for them to monitor threads like this for subversive talks, so they are busy doing it.
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Old 02-20-2016, 10:23 AM   #107
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It's easy to promote your view (or shoot down other views) if you selectively ignore what was said. It seems you are creating a straw man here.

I said I have nothing to hide, yes, but the context was that I have no problem violating the privacy of suspected criminals with proper warrants/authorizations. That does not mean - 'yeah, put cameras in my house (or access my cameras), and anybody can do do whatever they want with the feed 24/7/365. I don't care.'.

As far as a bad government and/or bad laws - that can happen regardless. If they wanted to target me, they wouldn't need any high tech to do it, in fact, it's probably easier w/o the tech - good old fashioned abuse.

Let's take technology out of the picture for a second - are search warrants abused today? Yes, I'm sure there are cases of it. But I don't know anyone who was abused by this - it isn't rampant (but any abuse is wrong). So do we 100% take away law enforcement's ability to obtain a search warrant because of some problems in the system? Would the public benefit from that?

I feel we should be trying to fix those problems/abuses, rather than take helpful tools away from law enforcement because of the possibilities for abuse. Take that to it's logical end, we would not give police guns, or a ticket book (they might use it to 'pin' a moving violation on me!). Any power can be abused, we need to weigh the pros/cons and work to correct any problems.

-ERD50

Let's use your search warrant as an example.... should the gvmt be able to get a search warrant and then as you to do the search on your neighbor because that would make it easier?

It is the act of forcing Apple to create something that is the problem IMO... if Apple already had a way to access the phone and all they were asked was to unlock it, that is different.... again, under a court order... but going the next step is where I have the problem...


What is stopping the gvmt, with all its smart people, from doing what it is asking Apple to do?
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Old 02-20-2016, 10:39 AM   #108
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Let's use your search warrant as an example.... should the gvmt be able to get a search warrant and then as you to do the search on your neighbor because that would make it easier?

It is the act of forcing Apple to create something that is the problem IMO... if Apple already had a way to access the phone and all they were asked was to unlock it, that is different.... again, under a court order... but going the next step is where I have the problem...
My comments are a little separate from the specific Apple issue at hand. I was addressing what I read as "all or nothing" comments on privacy.

I do think the Apple issue here is more complex, and there are things that we do not know, so I don't think we can make conclusions at this point.

I've said before, it is possible that Apple does not even have the means to bypass the security, regardless of the effort they put into it - the keys may have been a write-once, with no external read capability (the keys could be validated through challenges, not directly exposed in any way). Or it could be that Apple feels strongly that any back door acknowledgement risks their entire business model. I think that is a bit far-out there, if it takes hardware and sophisticated SW, and physical access to the phone, the risks to 99.999% of users are effectively zero - but Apple has the right to make that case to the Feds.

Quote:
What is stopping the gvmt, with all its smart people, from doing what it is asking Apple to do?
As I said, even Apple may not be able to do this. And if they can, it probably takes things just not available to the Feds w/o Apple's help - like 128 bit keys that are likely unique for each and every iPhone? And perhaps Apple did not retain them, just to eliminate back door attacks. Those keys could take decades to crack, even with advanced tools/access.

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Old 02-20-2016, 10:49 AM   #109
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All this fuss over an iPhone; I wish our infrastructure, corporate and gov't files were this secure
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Old 02-20-2016, 11:06 AM   #110
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Has the FBI offered to pay for this work product?
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Old 02-20-2016, 11:09 AM   #111
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I'm hoping Apple win this fight. If not there may well be a precedent set that Apple, Google and others will be forced into creating a backdoor to the end to end encryption used in phone calls and in messaging systems such as iMessage.

FBI Leader Calls For Legislation Allowing Wiretaps Of Encrypted Apps « CBS New York

The FBI and their counterparts in the UK and other countries would love to be able to wire tap encrypted phone calls and messages. IIRC when the USA intelligent services were accused of wire tapping the German Chancellor's phone it was only possible because Merkel's phone did not have encryption turned on.
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Old 02-20-2016, 12:02 PM   #112
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If they force US companies to install back doors or break encryption of the devices, the terrorists can just use messaging apps which do the same.

Then they'll have to chase down these smaller companies, some of which may not be in the US.

Let's just say they're able to get rid of strong encryption across all consumer products, with new legislation. Then these devices become vulnerable to all hackers.

In the 90s, US prohibited export of certain levels of encryption. So some of the weaker encryption tools which were allowed to be exported are at the core of certain SSL vulnerabilities, leading to billions lost in data theft.

Meanwhile, they can hamstring US companies but other countries may be unable or unwilling to do the same. You can imagine US messaging companies falling behind Israeli ones, unless the Israeli security establishment wages war on its own tech sector.

Terrorists will find other means of communicating if smart phones are no longer secure. So the FBI, NSA and the rest will have weakened the security and privacy of billions of lawful users for nothing.
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Old 02-20-2016, 01:42 PM   #113
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What the FBI is doing in this case is forensic work. It is not a backdoor to allow an agent to sneak info from anyone's phone with a few seconds of physical access to it. It does not even ask Apple to hand over the special software.

I claim neutrality in this because I really try to detach myself from politics nowadays, and to watch events and conflicts as if I were an extraterrestrial looking in. This way, I will be less upset no matter how things work out, because I no longer want to invest my emotion in anything that I cannot influence as an individual.

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All this fuss over an iPhone; I wish our infrastructure, corporate and gov't files were this secure
With what I wrote above, I think it is ironic that people are fussy over this. We have already ceded so much to the government. We are not trusted to save for ourselves for retirement, and people are talking about going beyond SS and take over 401k's. Even when we manage to save money, if we retire early we have to jump through hoops to get at our money to live on. I understand requiring car liability insurance to protect other people, but we now have to buy health insurance for ourselves.

The government already controls a lot about my financial affairs. And if they suspect me of something, they can follow me, wiretap me, bug my home and car while I am still alive. And doing it quite legally too. So, I am not going to be upset about not being able to hang on to that last vestigial personal privacy, that they would be able to break into my phone after I am already dead.

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Has the FBI offered to pay for this work product?
It does not appear so, but if Apple wanted compensation, it would not be a problem. How does $1M sound, for a couple of low-key programmers to do perhaps 1 month of work? It's not about money but the principle, between the two contenders.

What I am curious to see is how this will play out, up to the Supreme Court, and even beyond. Suppose the SC upholds the court order. Still, it is difficult to force someone to do things against their will unless you use physical violence. Apple's engineers could just spend a year twiddle thumbs, then say "Man, this is so tough I cannot do it".

By the way, I personally think there's a way Apple can break into its phone. It's not easy, but can be done. It may require extraneous effort like taking the phone apart, so not something you do in a sneaky way like stealing someone's phone for 5 minutes. But it can be done. And it requires internal knowledge, so cannot be done easily by an outsider. But Apple does not want to admit that its phone can be broken into for many reasons.
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Old 02-20-2016, 01:58 PM   #114
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About government spying on each other, I recall reading Spycatcher (1987), by Peter Wright, a former MI5 officer and Assistant Director. Very interesting reading on how international espionage works.

The author recounted a time when he traveled to Canada to install bugs in the Soviet Embassy as it was being built, and it was done with the help of the Canadian. This was during the Cold War. Very interesting reading.
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Old 02-20-2016, 02:01 PM   #115
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Apple needs to take this to the Supreme Court if need be.

Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety. – Benjamin Franklin, Historical Review of Pennsylvania, 1759
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Old 02-20-2016, 02:07 PM   #116
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Don't forget to read ERD50's post on the true meaning of Benjamin's quote. It was quite the reverse of what people take it to be. Ben was saying that a certain landowner who did not support the state should not come crying to the state for help later.
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Old 02-20-2016, 05:19 PM   #117
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That's not what he meant by it either. It was about the ability if the legislature to tax, while the Penn family was trying to give a chunk of money up front but being excluded from taxation. So it didn't really have anything to do with either.

However, it's still a nice turn of phrase, and it still applies (as a string of words) to today's environment. People are afraid, and are demanding that their (and everyone else's) civil liberties be stripped away so that they might be less afraid. And in the long run, people that are willing to do that will get neither.

Since Benjamin Franklin was talking about something else, I'll be glad to claim ownership of the concept in it's current version, while granting that the inspiration for it came from ol' Ben. So from now on, feel free to attribute the quote to me.
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Old 02-20-2016, 05:56 PM   #118
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Nice try there, Harley, for claiming credit for the quote in its popular meaning, but you are not the first to quote old Ben. Same as all of us, I have seen this famous quote numerous times over the years, and it was only yesterday that our friend ERD50 kindly disabused me of the romantic idea that I had always had when I thought of this quote. I admit that I was slightly taken aback. Just slightly, because few things really surprise me any more.

About the idealistic meaning of this, the common way people take it, people readily subscribe to it but do they really practice it? When a certain privilege is promised, do people think of whom it might be taken from? And will this country go back to the draft, or better, compulsory service so everybody is required to serve his country? Or is that going to be supported only by older people and without offsprings in the draft age?

If I sound so cynical, I think it's because I am getting really so as I age. Not too romantic, eh?
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Old 02-20-2016, 06:24 PM   #119
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I'll just settle for the Austrian School interpretation of Ben Franklin's statement in terms of property rights.


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Old 02-20-2016, 10:15 PM   #120
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Just as an FYI.... I read an article earlier today that said the gvmt entity that owned the phone has apps on other phones that would have allowed it to 'hack' it.... IOW, the owner of the phone can add an app that would make this whole discussion mute (at least for this phone)....
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