Slippery, slippery slope
Might be guilty of something.....
Might contain some evidence.....
There is only one way to be sure...... TAKE AWAY EVERYBODY'S PRIVACY!
Back when people kept their private thoughts, hopes, wishes and affairs locked up in their minds and in paper diaries, the Constitution guaranteed that such information could not be snooped on by the authorities unless there was reasonable cause for suspicion and a warrant issued by a judge. There is reasonable grounds for suspicion here alright but now the perps and their victims are dead. What more can we possibly learn? Potentially ripping open everyone's cupboards to establish a case and find every last shred of potential evidence is not the way forward.
Apple, even if it can do this, will lose any credibility as a company that cares about its customers' privacy. The Feds and elected leaders have already lost this credibility and continue their downward spiral and race to the bottom. People are getting increasingly pissed off, losing trust and feeling bad. That is the real problem, and it won't be fixed until people feel reasonably safe again. Stuff like this definitely doesn't help.
As is stands, privacy is pretty damn precarious today. People walk around with their entire lives stored on electronic devices, inside emails, and so on. They should be able to protect this data against official prying eyes by any means available, unless they are being arrested. This needs to be re-established as a principle and respected by law enforcement and government reps. The government doesn't need to have eyes everywhere, no one does.
The principle that our data is still private, secure and personal and deserves constitutional protection is what is at stake here. We can always justify a little less privacy for a little more security. Then one day we can all wake up with no privacy and probably no security either. We make trade-offs to remain free and conduct lives without fearing excessive government interference, over reach and meddling in our private sphere.
Even without the the legal and technical difficulties raised by the FBI's case, this trade off question alone is sufficient reason to throw the case out and prevent the establishment of another dangerous precedent.
The FBI thinks it will learn something from this company phone. All they ask in return is irreparable damage to a global company's reputation and weaker security for everyone's private data.
This is bat shit insane and has to stop. I know it is an election year, but this is not a trivial problem here.
The sooner the control freaks understand this, the sooner we might get some sanity into the debate. Right now, we are descending ever faster into cloud cuckoo land and it is only getting worse.