The FBI is asking Apple to build a backdoor into the iPhone allowing it to effectively request access to any customer's data with a warrant. Despite the hundreds of cases around the country where law enforcement is seeking access to an iPhone, the FBI chose to use the San Bernardino shooter's iPhone as the case to pursue in court. This was likely a well calculated decision to sway public opinion.
Cook says Apple didn't make the decision to oppose the order lightly.
“We had long discussions about that internally, when they asked us,” Cook says. “Lots of people were involved. It wasn’t just me sitting in a room somewhere deciding that way, it was a labored decision. We thought about all the things you would think we would think about.”
Ultimately, Apple decided not to build the backdoor; however, the FBI decided to not only escalate the matter but take it public without informing the company.
“If I’m working with you for several months on things, if I have a relationship with you, and I decide one day I’m going to sue you, I’m a country boy at the end of the day: I’m going to pick up the phone and tell you I’m going to sue you,” says Cook.
The FBI could have filed its motions under seal but instead chose to take the matter public. Since then the two have appeared before Congress and fought a very public battle in the media.
"I do think this is something that I think will affect the wellbeing of citizens of the U.S. for decades to come, that will affect civil liberties for decades to come", says Cook. "This is of that kind of stature and of that kind of importance. As it was going, the steamroller was on. And our job was just to be rolled up under the steamroller. And that’s what they expected. I wouldn’t be able to live [with that] anymore, and nobody here would. It wasn’t just me. It’s literally almost the whole company feels like that. And yes, we understand the technology a lot more and so we see, we understand technically this thing deeply."
"We ward off attacks every day and so we have a working knowledge of the cyber landscape. That probably makes us more ultra sensitive to it. And we’re also believers in civil liberties. To me this is a part of the foundation of what America is. Right to privacy is really important. You pull that brick out and another and pretty soon the house falls."
You can read the full interview at the link below...