Facebook is the latest tech giant to join Apple's battle against the FBI. Speaking at the Mobile World Congress today in Barcelona, CEO Mark Zuckerberg said that he supports Apple's decision not to provide back-door access for the government to crack the iPhone of a suspected terrorist. As reported by Re/code Zuckerberg's said:
We're sympathetic with Apple on this one. We believe in encryption. I expect it's not the right thing to try to block that from the mainstream products people want to use. And I think it's not going to be the right regulatory or economic policy to put in place.
When it comes to brand alignment, Zuckerberg must land on the side of encryption since WhatsApp, which Facebook now owns, famously features end-to-end encryption. But he was sure to mention that Facebook would work with the FBI. "If there's any content that's promoting terrorism or sympathising with ISIS or anything like that," said Zuckerberg, "we'll … get those people off the service."
(Remember that it was erroneously reported that the shooters used Facebook to post incendiary content.)
While it's not a huge surprise that Zuck sides with Tim Cook — and Google chief Sundar Pichai — it is rather interesting to see if and how the Facebook founder's statement will be received by Facebook users. A new study out today by the Pew Research Center says that a majority of Americans believe that Apple should help the FBI unlock the iPhone. Of the 1002 adults polled last week, 51 per cent said Apple should work with the FBI; 38 per cent said Apple should not cooperate; and 11 per cent didn't know.
Cook has proposed that an independent commission review the case to settle what is now essentially a giant circle of pointing fingers, which almost certainly could have been avoided if local police hadn't accidentally reset the iCloud password in question.
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