Apple should stand firm behind encrypted messages

By: Cam Grubic

As teenagers, we obviously harbor messages or data in our cell phones that we keep between ourselves and the recipients on the other end of the line, whether cell phones, laptops, tablets or other devices. However, the British government is pushing Apple to leave an open back door to all devices for access to messages that may be tied or lead up to criminal activity, but no one would be comfortable giving their phones to the people next to them, even if there is nothing to hide; it’s still personal.

It has been proposed by the British Parliament that there should be access to messages and Facetime chats. Apple’s chief executive, Tim Cook, is holding his ground and claims that politicians supporting the idea, simply do not understand the damage they could cause. Not only does it invade the privacy of the people, it also creates potential risks from other countries hacking cellphones for information.

President Barack Obama and the staff in the White House have stated that they are not seeking legal changes against the matter. On the other hand, a majority of the Republican presidential candidates have advocated and pushed for the government to have access to cellular text messages and data; Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton has strongly pushed for the idea as well, stating that it could stop potential terrorist attacks, but is it in the best interest of the people?

If the changes were to be made to comply with the laws of the Parliament, Apple pointed out that then their company and others like it would be breaking the American laws, so it is obvious that obstacles stand in the way, and if anyone were to go ahead with it, the kinks would have to be worked out. Would Apple or their competitors make two separate phones to comply with different laws? Will the two governments drop the issue? Or will both go ahead with it?

The government having a way to hack into cell phones could reduce terrorist attacks like the one in San Bernadino, no doubt, but it isn’t right for anyone to have the opportunity to hack the personal lives of innocent civilians who far outnumber those who concede in domestic terrorism.

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