Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Polls favor the FBI over Apple

A new Pew poll reports:
As the standoff between the Department of Justice and Apple Inc. continues over an iPhone used by one of the suspects in the San Bernardino terrorist attacks, 51% say Apple should unlock the iPhone to assist the ongoing FBI investigation. Fewer Americans (38%) say Apple should not unlock the phone to ensure the security of its other users’ information; 11% do not offer an opinion on the question.
The poll details are here.

A new Reuters poll reports:
When asked if the U.S. government should be able to look at data on Americans' phones to protect against terror threats, 46 percent agreed, 42 percent disagreed and the rest said they were not sure.
Rush Limbaugh reported this poll as favoring Apple, because it found 46% agreeing with Apple's decision to contest the court order.

It appears to me that the DoJ, FBI, and the judge also wanted Apple to contest this order. The case was chosen as one where Apple was sure to lose in a higher court. All of the circumstantial factors favor the FBI -- the crime was terrible, the guilt is certain, the terrorism inguiry is necessary, it is easy for Apple to comply, it was a government phone, there is no privacy at stake, etc. Both Apple and the FBI seemed to agree to make a big public show of this case.

Apple can lose this case, and use the court decision as a justification for spying on its users. There could well be a lot of people who agree with Apple contesting this case, and then losing it.

Apple is not helping the cause of privacy. It retains the power to spy on us while also thwarting prosecution of Moslem terrorists.

Rush defends Apple on this issue, as he is an Apple fanboy. He regularly praises Apple products, even tho he admits to having to spend many hours each week chasing down bugs and performance issues. He says that his device only last about 4 hours on a full charge, and he has spent weeks trying to figure out what was draining his batteries. His time would be better spent getting Donald Trump elected President. Trump is not siding with Apple and the Moslem terrorists.

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