The case between Apple and the FBI has sparked an interesting debate regarding encryption. Encryption allows protection from hackers and allows for privacy. But if that same encryption makes it impossible to access information from criminals and terrorists, is encryption a good thing? Or is it possible to provide privacy and protection through encryption without hindering criminal investigations? The FBI and Apple have yet to agree.
FBI’s Arguments on Encryption
The FBI is not arguing in favor of getting rid of encryption. In fact, the department of science and technology at the FBI came out in support of strong encryption. However, they are arguing that in certain situations, like in the recent attempt to unlock an Apple phone related to the San Bernardino terrorist attack, there need to be a way to access encrypted information. The FBI argues that they need to be able to access encrypted information when needed, like if they obtain a warrant for it. In fact, some investigations were able to access encrypted information because the software had enabling access. But now, with companies pushing for full security, they created encryption systems that even they can’t hack. With such encryption, law investigations can’t access potentially needed information.
Apple’s Arguments on Encryption
The problem with having a scapegoat for encryption is hackers might access the same scapegoat too. So how can companies like Apple protect the privacy of customers if they open up their encryption systems to be decrypted? Apple argues that could happen. Their encryption is top notch, but if they open it up to try and work with law enforcement, that might open up more than they want, allowing phones and similar devices to be accessible to hackers and criminal attacks.
Potential Compromise Regarding Encryption
Is there any possible compromise in this battle between Apple and the FBI? Is there a potential compromise regarding encryption and law enforcement? Honestly, they still have to figure it out. The courts are still waging, companies still testifying, the sides still arguing. But what does this battle mean for the everyday person?
Here is the bottom line: In any circumstance of a compromise or a win by the FBI, privacy will be at stake. Since terrorism and criminal activity is taken seriously, it is likely that a compromise is in the future. That means that some level of protection from hackers will be removed. So people need to be smarter and safer in relation to their smart devices. Maybe that means people will not spend as much of their personal and work time on their phones. But really, it means we will have to continue our tech-driven lives aware of what we’re doing, what information we’re sharing, and who could potentially access that information. So while the encryption battle rages on, people need to realize that anything connected in the online world is susceptible to being hacked.