The company compared the FBI’s order to a pharma firm being forced to produce lethal injection drugs
Apple filed a legal motion Feb. 25 rejecting the government’s request to help it access data on a password-protected iPhone used by a deceased terrorism suspect.
A federal judge ordered Apple on Feb. 16 to help the Federal Bureau of Investigation bypass the iPhone’s password protections. The company signaled its intent to refuse the judge’s instructions in a letter posted by CEO Tim Cook shortly thereafter.
Apple’s formal response is detailed and wide-ranging. But one argument is particularly notable: Apple says that complying with the judge’s order would mean prosecutors across the country come out of the woodwork with similar demands, rendering the company’s security measures useless:
The government says: “Just this once” and “Just this phone.” But the government knows those statements are not true; indeed the government has filed multiple other applications for similar orders, some of which are pending in other courts. And as news of this Court’s order broke last week, state and local officials publicly declared their intent to use the proposed operating system to open hundreds of other seized devices—in cases having nothing to do with terrorism.