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Trump attacks Apple in push to weaken encryption

President Donald Trump attacks Apple weighed in Tuesday on a re-ignited battle over encryption, calling out Apple for refusing to make backdoors that might help law enforcement agencies unlock iPhones.

Just a night after the Department of Justice and Attorney General William Barr criticized the tech giant for . of “substantive help” in its investigation of a deadly shooting at a Florida Naval base, the president is now adding to the pressure on Apple.

In a tweet Tuesday, Trump wrote, “We are helping Apple all of the time on TRADE and then many other issues, and yet they refuse to unlock phones utilized by killers, drug dealers and other violent criminal elements.”

He involved Apple to “step up to the plate” and help the United States government in its investigation.

Apple declined to discuss Trump’s remarks. On Monday, apple said it rejected the Justice Department’s characterization that it hasn’t been helping with the investigation.

The company said it’s provided the FBI information on the gunman’s iPhone, including account information, iCloud backups and transactional data for several accounts related to the device.

Apple also said that it didn’t receive requests concerning second iPhone within the investigation until Jan. 8. While it’s ready to provide all that data for investigations, Apple remains steadfast that it won’t create a backdoor to encryption to assist with investigations.

“We have always maintained there’s no such thing as a backdoor only for the great guys,” Apple said during a statement sent Monday. “Backdoors also can be exploited by those that threaten our national security and therefore the data security of our customers.”

While Apple is trying to publicly mitigate the dispute, Apple is additionally reportedly preparing for a possible legal battle with the Department of Justice to defend encryption on its iPhones. Executives because the company were surprised by the case’s quick escalation, consistent with The ny Times, and a few at Apple have expressed skepticism that the FBI has exhausted its third-party tools to access the iPhones.

The American Civil Liberties Union criticized the president’s demand as “dangerous and unconstitutional,” adding that complying would end in weaker security for all iPhones.

“Strong encryption enables religious minorities facing genocide, just like the Uyghurs in China, and journalists investigating powerful drug cartels in Mexico, to speak safely with one another , knowledgeable sources, and therefore the outside world,” the ACLU said during a statement.

“There is just no way for Apple, or the other company, to supply the FBI access to encrypted communications without also providing it to authoritarian foreign governments and weakening our defenses against criminals and hackers.”

Trump has called Apple out over an equivalent issue within the past — as a candidate running for president in 2016. After Apple refused to make a backdoor to encryption to unlock an iPhone belonging to terrorists behind the San Bernardino shooting, Trump involved a boycott of the corporate .

While the FBI was eventually ready to unlock the iPhone without Apple’s help, the Department of Justice has continued its push to weaken encryption standards for its investigations.

On multiple occasions, governments have lamented that their investigations are stalled due to encryption, and still ask tech companies to compromise on their user security and privacy within the name of public safety. Trump attacks Apple

Along with Apple, companies like Facebook, Google and Microsoft have stood firm against those governments, warning that weakening encryption would endanger billions of individuals and devices.

At a Senate hearing in December, lawmakers issued a stern warning to tech companies: Find how to figure with enforcement on investigations, or there’ll be legislation regulating encryption soon. Trump attacks Apple

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