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China Censorship Encryption Government Apple News

Apple Is Not Such a Freedom Fighter In China (latimes.com) 238

mi writes: Though loudly resisting the American government's attempts to make it help break into the phone of a dead scumbag, Apple is very accommodating of the Chinese government's attempts to keep tabs on the citizenry's communications. Apple has censored apps that wouldn't pass muster with the Chinese government, moved local user data onto servers operated by the state-owned China Telecom, and submitted to Chinese audits. According to James Lewis, senior fellow at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, "I can't imagine the Chinese would tolerate end-to-end encryption or a refusal to cooperate with their police, particularly in a terrorism case." Why the accommodation there?
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Apple Is Not Such a Freedom Fighter In China

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday February 26, 2016 @04:33PM (#51593867)

    At best, they're pretending to be a freedom fighter.

    And it'll fool the same folks that bought Google's "Don't be evil" bullshit.

    • by Aighearach ( 97333 ) on Friday February 26, 2016 @05:12PM (#51594271) Homepage

      Apple isn't a "Freedom Fighter" they're an American company who insists on fighting for their own American freedoms.

      They're not Chinese, they don't really have a stake in Chinese Freedom, or an expectation of it.

      It doesn't need to "fool" anybody; American companies are expected to stand up for their own rights, it is a prerogative of those having some Freedom, it is not presumed to be some sort of ideological or political or PR endeavor.

      • by ShanghaiBill ( 739463 ) on Friday February 26, 2016 @06:00PM (#51594829)

        Corporations are bound to obey the laws of the countries in which they operate. Apples argument against the FBI subpoena is not that it is wrong, but that it is illegal. In China, they cannot make that argument. China is an authoritarian country, and that is not something that is going to be changed by Apple, or any other American corporation. It is not their role to "fix" China. The Chinese people need to do that for themselves.

        • Corporations are bound to obey the laws of the countries in which they operate.

          Yes indeed. All freedom fighters check the local laws that are about to break.

        • And if Apple gets a phone model where they can't break their own encryption, they'll try to sell it in China.

    • by Midnight Thunder ( 17205 ) on Friday February 26, 2016 @05:15PM (#51594307) Homepage Journal

      The other way of seeing is that Apple is choosing which battles to fight. You can't win them all and you would be foolish to try.

      Apple is an American company, in the USA, a country that has strong ideals about civil liberties, so fighting this in on home turf makes a lot of sense. China is more complicated, since it is not a country with strong ideals about civil liberties, it is not Apple's home turf and it probably wouldn't take much for Apple to be excluded from that market, not mention potential diplomatic issues. If Apple can't win a civil liberty fight back home, what chance does it stand in China. Remember what happened to Google.

      • Why does Apple get a pass when everyone raked BlackBerry over the coals when they tried and for a while succeeded in blocking foreign Govs demands for access to BBM servers in their territories?

        I don't get it. Unless this is some sort of perverse American rationalization of the pursuit of the almighty dollar trumping non-American's rights to privacy.
        • by KGIII ( 973947 )

          They get a pass because we're biased, illogical, unreasonable, and human. Don't blame me, I'm glad I'm not a human!

        • Why does Apple get a pass when everyone raked BlackBerry over the coals

          Because "everyone" didn't criticize BB, and it unlikely that the people defending Apple are the same people that criticized BB.

        • I don't think Apple is getting a free pass, rather Apple is making this an issue of public debate in their own country. Apple is very much in the limelight and is gambling on the future strategy and their reputation with this. Heck, whatever happens here will impact every other device, so we can't say this is only Apple centric.

          Blackberry was dealing with foreign governments and did fight where they could. Ultimately they were dealing with foreign nations, and were also in a difficult position. We are also

  • by acoustix ( 123925 ) on Friday February 26, 2016 @04:35PM (#51593891) Homepage

    But you cannot compare the two. Citizens of the US are guaranteed certain freedoms and liberties. Citizens in China are not. That's China's problem, not Apple's. If the people of China want the same protections, they need to do something about it.

    Go ahead and check my history. I'm a huge BlackBerry supporter and generally dislike Apple products. But Apple is 100% correct here.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by dAzED1 ( 33635 )
      Apple is claiming a moral highground as a company - if they were worried about US citizens they wouldn't do a lot of the things they do. I don't see how liberties of the two companies are relevant to the highground they're claiming.
      • by Anonymous Coward on Friday February 26, 2016 @05:01PM (#51594163)

        Apple's moral high ground is irrelevant. They are protecting the rights of their customers in this instance, at great expense, and if their motives are not snow-white, then that does not invalidate their actions. They are being drafted, as a company, to produce work for free to the united states government, which will coincidentally do what is probably a great deal of harm to their user base. They have cooperated with every lawful court order and it is only the unlawful one they are objecting to.

        Captcha: Bugged. Because just reading your slashdot posts isn't enough for Uncle Sam.

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by Aighearach ( 97333 )

          They are protecting the rights of their customers in this instance

          False. They are protecting their own rights, not the rights of their customers. As a matter of fact. The stuff about "customer rights" is PR. Customers don't have a "right" to secure products, they are simply free to choose a product they believe to be more secure. Customers preferring secure products invokes Apple's right to offer what products they believe will sell. Apple has a right to choose what they sell, customers don't have a right to have certain features offered in the marketplace.

          • They are protecting their customers because they wish to retain them as customers in the future. If they cave in to the FBI on this then there would be a drop in the number of customers. So enlightened self interest means they have to also be nice to their customers. Any company that's not a monopoly has to respect its customers if it wants to succeed.

        • since if they're not motivated by a love of freedom then they'll change their tune the moment somebody makes it worth their while. My take? Apple doesn't want to have to spend millions maintaining expert programmers to write a back door, millions more trying to keep that backdoor out of the hands of blackhat hackers and then millions more repairing the brand damage when one of the backdoors leaks. This is about money, pure and simple. Which is why China gets a pass on e2e encryption.

          Apple could choose to
      • by Aaden42 ( 198257 ) on Friday February 26, 2016 @05:06PM (#51594203) Homepage

        Apple's stance is to comply with the laws in the jurisdiction they operate in. In China, that means do what central government says. In the US, that means do what the laws say. Apple's stance in the US case is that FBI's request isn't supported by current US law. That's the way the law works in the US. The government tries to do a thing, and it's the citizen's right (including citizen corporations) to challenge that by due process in court. Apple is complying with US law in the US and Chinese law in China.

        Also, nice impartial language in the summary, eds...

        • by Anonymous Coward on Friday February 26, 2016 @05:21PM (#51594375)

          That nice, but irrelevant. It has nothing to do with the difference in laws between the U.S. and China.

          Apple is very cooperative with the oppressive Chinese government for one reason and one reason only -- China is Apple's supplier of slave labor. If Apple refused to cooperate and was forced to go elsewhere, it would cut into their massive profit margin. On the other hand, fighting the FBI does nothing to hurt Apple's profits and allows them to pretend that they actually care about their users.

        • by AmiMoJo ( 196126 )

          Tim Cook's statements make it clear it's not just a legal issue. He considers it both a moral issue and a business issue (customers would be upset).

          • by dAzED1 ( 33635 )
            that's the point though - if he actually considers it a moral issue, then why are his morals geographically divergent?
      • Apple is claiming a moral highground

        No, actually Apple is claiming legal high ground. Time will tell, but their position seems to be a slam dunk. Just read the decisions that the FBI is claiming in their filings support them; they don't! In the NY phone case, the phone company already used the equipment they were asked to deploy, and it is right in the decision that that is one of the main reasons that they had to assist; they were already assisting clients using the same tool! Very different than Apple's case. The media is intentionally repo

        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by macs4all ( 973270 )

          Apple really does have the high ground.

          And don't forget the growing pile of Amicus Briefs, most significantly, even from their competitors.

          Even Microsoft is smart enough to file one, even after their High Priest (Gates) came out and publically stuck his foot in his mouth about the subject.

    • by Aighearach ( 97333 ) on Friday February 26, 2016 @05:20PM (#51594343) Homepage

      I've been hating Apple ever since I first used a Mac. (loved the ][series though)

      I can hate Apple at the same time as agreeing that they deserve Freedom. I can hate them even while standing up for their right to choose their own speech, to write (only) the software that they want to write. I can hate them even while standing up for their right under the 5th Amendment to have their own PR and not to have it taken away by the FBI without just compensation for the loss. Considering the incredible label-markup their products command, I doubt the FBI could even afford to buy out their PR as a legit taking. ;)

      A lot of people in the world just don't imagine how deep the American love of our Freedoms is. Love of Freedom trumps love of life, it certainly trumps hate of elitist walled gardens. If they can afford their stinky garden, then let them wallow in it!

      Likewise, we're pretty neutral on Chinese freedom. If they valued it, they would have it. They seem to value national unity more. They are free to have that system. ;)

    • More on China "freedom"

      .
      www.nytimes.com/2016/02/25/opinion/chinasincreasingly-muffled-press.html

      China’s Increasingly Muffled Press

      ... [President Xi Jinping] recently visited the three main newsrooms in the country to convey in unmistakable terms that journalists are expected to behave like apparatchiks. That message, which predictably received fawning coverage, came a few days after the government announced it would further restrict foreign media, too.

      Under rules Beijing says it will start enforcing next month, foreign companies will be barred from publishing online content — including text, videos, maps and games — in China without prior approval from the government. The regulations, which could affect major American companies including Amazon, Microsoft and Apple, are intended to “promote core socialist values.” ...

  • Freedom fighter? (Score:2, Insightful)

    Who ever thought Apple was a freedom fighter? They use essentially slave labor to assemble their iPhones. Bizarre.
    • by Brannon ( 221550 ) on Friday February 26, 2016 @04:55PM (#51594095)

      It's weird that Apple is always pointed out for using "slave labor" when every other manufacturer of consumer electronics is at least as bad.

      BTW: have we now fully accepted the redefinition of "slave labor" to mean "voluntarily working at a job which pays the at or above the typical prevailing wage of the area in which the job is located"? Because "slave labor" used to mean something...different.

      • It's weird that Apple is always pointed out for using "slave labor" when every other manufacturer of consumer electronics is at least as bad.

        This is true, but Apple is the biggest of all those companies so they get more attention.

        BTW: have we now fully accepted the redefinition of "slave labor" to mean "voluntarily working at a job which pays the at or above the typical prevailing wage of the area in which the job is located"?

        It's only "voluntary" in the strictest definition of the word. Why do you think they have such a problem with workers commiting suicide? Why did they have to put up nets to prevent people from killing themselves by jumping off the roofs of buildings? Because quitting and going to work somewhere else IS NOT AN OPTION .

        If you want a job, you have exactly one choice -- 16 hours a day for a few pennies, under the wors

        • 1. Even during the worst stretch the suicide rate at Foxconn was lower than that for China or the US.

          2. I'm not sure why it is Apple's fault that China has a lower quality of life. If Apple pulled their business from China and instead built the phones using robots in the US, do you think that would help the average Chinese person? The average Chinese worker IS getting a raw deal, but that blame rests squarely on the shoulders of their economic system & government.

          3. Obviously a "few pennies per day" is

        • If you want a job, you have exactly one choice

          Nonsense. If you actually believe that, you should get a passport and go to Shenzhen. There is factory after factory, about 100m apart. There are plenty of options, and labor is in short supply.

          16 hours a day for a few pennies

          More nonsense. A typical factory worker in Shenzhen earns about $30 for an 8 hour day. Many work overtime, but no one is required to. In surveys, the factory workers biggest complaint is that they want to work LONGER hours, so they can earn more money faster. Many of them are women separated from their childre

      • It's weird that Apple is always pointed out for using "slave labor" when every other manufacturer of consumer electronics is at least as bad.

        Nothing weird about it. All companies get called out on their actions, but many more get called out on their statements. Apple became a target when they started trumpeting their practices as being above all other companies. It's only fair to call them out on their bullshit and punish them for it.

      • FYI, BlackBerry did NOT use low cost manufacturing houses at any point until John Chen came along. At that point the low cost manufacturers were already cleaning up their act after the Foxconn suicide nets hit the news.
      • Work is not voluntary if you need to eat. The wage you work at is not your choice if you have no choice but to work.

    • Re:Freedom fighter? (Score:5, Interesting)

      by DNS-and-BIND ( 461968 ) on Friday February 26, 2016 @05:32PM (#51594515) Homepage

      Slave labor? No. The journalist who reported that was outed as a fraud. He essentially wished it would be true, and then made up the story. The Western press ate it up...the retraction didn't get much press for obvious reasons.

      The labor conditions in China are different, shock, horror. They don't comply with American laws for some bizarre reason. Calling it slave labor is stupid, but what can men do against such reckless hate?

    • by tnk1 ( 899206 )

      I certainly don't.

      That said, I'm glad that in Apple's case, even evil has standards.

  • FaceTime rarely works between China and the US, and both our phones were purchased in the US. I suspect deep packet inspection and forged packets forcing the app to disconnect the sessions.

    https://www.techinasia.com/app... [techinasia.com]

    Consider this a PSA both to travelers and local Chinese: if you’re in mainland China and want to buy an iOS gadget, don’t do it. Go to Hong Kong where you’ll get much better prices (thanks to no sales tax) and all the features you’d expect.

  • by fustakrakich ( 1673220 ) on Friday February 26, 2016 @04:38PM (#51593919) Journal

    What can I say? Business is business. This 'freedom fighter' stuff makes for good soap opera and draws a few more customers, but not much else.

    Regardless, we shouldn't be depending on any large company to protect our interests. If you want privacy, you're on your own.

  • Apple pretty much has to cooperate with the governments of places where it wants to do business. That is why they keep trying to make a phone that even they can't hack. A government can demand anything it likes, but they can't make Apple do the impossible.

    If you are worried about your data getting out, it pays to find out which features to turn off and which to turn on to protect yourself. Apple is just an electronics company.

    • Apple is just an electronics and software company.

      • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

        by dAzED1 ( 33635 )
        Apple is just an electronics, software, and people-as-a-product company. They make money off you being a product - less so than facebook and google, sure, but they still do.
        • by Old97 ( 1341297 )
          Please explain what you wrote. Provide some factual examples. As far as I can tell Apple only sells goods and services to people.
        • Overwhelmingly Apple makes their money by selling real products to real customers--they have essentially 0 interest in selling your private information to anyone.

  • Apple does the same things for US law enforcement they do for China.

    China has NOT (yet) asked Apple to build a custom version of the OS that (a) bypasses the unlock count check, and (b) provides for an automated way to try pin code entry.

    That is all Apple is baking against, being compelled by the government to write custom software, to fundamentally weaken iOS security.

    On a side note, China would damn well not have reset the users iCloud password. That's the worst part, the FBI is asking Apple to spend sig

    • China has NOT (yet) asked Apple to build a custom version of the OS that (a) bypasses the unlock count check, and (b) provides for an automated way to try pin code entry.

      You say that with a great deal of certainty. Do you really think you'd know if it were the case?

      Ultimately Apple is a commercial entity in it for the profit and it'll adapt to what's profitable in the region it's working in.

      • You say that with a great deal of certainty. Do you really think you'd know if it were the case?

        We all would because the FBI would point out Apple had already done this.

        Ultimately Apple is a commercial entity in it for the profit

        Still don't understand how companies actually work do you?

        Think man, how many things do companies do that are obviously for profit?

        In fact every company I have been in MOSTLY does things that are not obviously about profit, or in fact obviously against profit.

        Your mistake is in not

        • We all would because the FBI would point out Apple had already done this.

          That's neither evidence nor proof of anything. What Apple does in China has no bearing on US law. Apple is arguing in a US court that US laws say that it cannot be compelled by the US government to create a backdoor. The FBI trying to claim that they did that in China would have no effect on the US case. So your claim is not evidence of anything. Apple already stores Chinese customer data on servers located in China, do you honestly believe that the Chinese government does not have access to that data?

      • If China had already asked for this, and received it, then Apple would be perjuring themselves when they tell the courts that such a version of iOS doesn't exist, and has never existed.

        That's how we know. No lawyer is going to risk his career (fines, jail time, disbarment) just to keep the Apple a bit shinier.

    • Yes say they havn't yet asked but if they have you probably never hear about it as it would be kept out of the public eye.
    • by msauve ( 701917 ) on Friday February 26, 2016 @04:59PM (#51594135)
      "Apple said seven people for up to four weeks"

      Yeah, right. Like it takes that much effort to change a constant from 10 to 10000. And it's not like they'd have to put it through a full suite of validation tests afterwards - who cares if they can still make a phone call?

      Having said that, I support Apple's position, but I think they're being disingenuous with that claim, unless they're counting the lawyer's time in that figure.
      • I support this idea. "Oops changed the wrong constant the device is now wiped" would be a great outcome of fast and cheap service.

      • by ljw1004 ( 764174 )

        "Apple said seven people for up to four weeks". Yeah, right. Like it takes that much effort to change a constant from 10 to 10000. And it's not like they'd have to put it through a full suite of validation tests afterwards - who cares if they can still make a phone call?

        I think it'll take them 3 people for 1 week to do the first 90% of the work, and seven people for 8 weeks to do the remaining 90% of the work.

        (So I think Apple are lowballing their estimate. I'm basing this on my industry experience of making small changes in huge corporate software bases. Also, sure they don't need a full suite of validation tests, but instead they'll HAVE TO INVENT NEW VALIDATION TESTS for the new remote-PIN-trying functionality that they're exposing, which takes much longer.)

      • Not only do they have to do validation on the OS, they'd have to let other people do validation on the OS. You have to be guaranteed that it doesn't change or wipe any data in the process, and you have to be able to prove that it doesn't because otherwise the data is invalid. Otherwise, it doesn't really have a legal leg to stand on. For the FBI's fishing expedition, maybe that matters less, but anything that goes to court needs to be validated for forensic purposes.

        So they have to remove the limit on attem

      • They don't have to do full validation test, but they damn well be 100% certain that the unlocks-before-wipe change works. If it doesn't then the FBI will roast them for purposefully botching the job, intentional or not. And by roasting I men most certainly filing some sort of negligence or disobedience charges.

      • by c ( 8461 )

        I think they're being disingenuous with that claim, unless they're counting the lawyer's time in that figure.

        Hell, yes.

        Here's the thing... the code changes are probably relatively easy... it's mostly deleting stuff. If they're careful, they're going to completely delete the entire subsystem that actually performs a factory reset, not just the triggers that lead to it. It's the only way to be sure.

        The harder part is making sure the changes actually work.

        The really hard part is documenting the shit out of the

    • by JustNiz ( 692889 )

      >> Apple said seven people for up to four weeks

      Yeah I'm not buying it. They're just saying that to put the government off.
      How long would it take for one developer with the source code and some pre-existing familiarity with it to find and change the retry counter from 10 to either disabled or at least some *really* big number?
      I'm guessing minutes.

    • The summary creates a strawman "Apple would probably break end-to-end encryption for the Chinese if that asked Apple to" and then chastises Apple for hypocrisy. You, like a good little lemming pipe up with "Because $$$".

      It would be like if I said: "publicly wjcofkc is against pedophilia, but privately he is probably a pedophile--while is wjcofkc such a hypcrotical pedophile?".

  • Try harder. You can imagine anything if you try.

  • by slashdot_commentator ( 444053 ) on Friday February 26, 2016 @04:49PM (#51594043) Journal

    According to James Lewis, senior fellow at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, "I can't imagine the Chinese would tolerate end-to-end encryption or a refusal to cooperate with their police, particularly in a terrorism case." Why the accommodation there?

    Kudos to the article submitter (& braindead slashdot "editor") for the Apple hatchet job by innuendo. Apple hasn't done anything for the Chinese gov't that it has refused to the US gov't. Everything the article fearmongers is about the "potential" of what the Chinese gov't will ask Apple, if the DOJ gets their way. There is no compelling reason for China to request modifications to degrade the phone security. Only rich chinese citizens can afford to own an iPhone, and they're all joined to the hip with party leadership.

  • ...the author wants America to be more like China. Congrats on seeking such a huge step backwards...

  • by clonehappy ( 655530 ) on Friday February 26, 2016 @04:55PM (#51594103)

    Shows just how far we've slipped down the hole to tyranny.

    It used to be we would point to things done by the governments of China and other communist/repressive regimes and show our superiority that we maintain an orderly and law-abiding society without resorting to such nefarious, underhanded activities against our own citizens. Why, backdooring hardware, warrantless wiretapping, sneak and peek raids? Those are things done by tyrannies! Who would ever....in America??

    Now, we ask why a private company won't give our own government the same things it gives to a repressive tyrannical regime. It should go without fucking saying why a private company would hold it's own, supposedly above board and representative government, to a higher standard than a third-world dictatorship! Are we all really so dense that the question even needs to be asked?!

    Now, we can wax intellectual about whether the United States government has ever been a representative one or if freedom ever really has existed, but that's a philosophical conversation that has no place in this discussion. The fact remains is that the line we're all sold, since the day we're born, is that America is the Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave, and our freedoms are the envy of the world and it's what makes us stand out as a beacon of liberty in an otherwise oppressive world. And now that an organization with a little bit of money and power is asking the powers that be to put their money where their mouth is, we get to see the true colors of the establishment, in all it's disgusting, ugly, hypocritical hues.

    • SOOOOO much this.

    • Freedom and Liberty are our ideals, and humans are not going to live up to their ideals sometimes. Sometimes you need to get out the pitchforks and torches and start hanging traitors to our ideals.

      I also like how you turned a discussion about China into yet another America Sucks rant. We certainly have been short on those lately on Slashdot. Thanks for making up the shortfall.

      • I also like how you turned a discussion about China into yet another America Sucks rant. We certainly have been short on those lately on Slashdot. Thanks for making up the shortfall.

        On the contrary, I happen to be of the opinion that America is, in fact, exceptional*. That's precisely why I want us to live up to our ideals rather than throw them away for a bit of perceived security. We don't need a police state in America to be free.

        * I know that's a bad word these days, but I stand by it. Nowhere else on Earth has seen the prosperity, personal wealth, and standard of living that we have achieved. And that was done through freedom and liberty, not because we acted like Stalin or Ma

        • by Rakarra ( 112805 )

          * I know that's a bad word these days, but I stand by it. Nowhere else on Earth has seen the prosperity, personal wealth, and standard of living that we have achieved. And that was done through freedom and liberty, not because we acted like Stalin or Mao.

          You sure about that? We have a number of countries who aren't our friends, especially in Latin and South America, because the US treated other countries as tribute states, raiding the resources and overthrowing governments who didn't toe the colonial line. The US talked a very good talk, and I believe in the ideal of American Exceptionalism, but in practice, it's an ideal we've tried to live up to and fallen short -- and it's been that way since its very founding.

          • I believe in the ideal of American Exceptionalism, but in practice, it's an ideal we've tried to live up to and fallen short -- and it's been that way since its very founding.

            I don't disagree. The unfortunate problem, at least for me, is I don't see any better way.

            I can only go by the recounting of recent recorded history (say, the 1200's to present), but it seems that the basic tenets of free enterprise, liberty, and personal wealth/property is simply better than the antithesis of large-scale communal societies. Does socialism work? Yes, on the small level of communities, (yes) churches, people who know and trust one another.

            Beyond that, you're better off just fending for yo

  • by QuietLagoon ( 813062 ) on Friday February 26, 2016 @04:56PM (#51594111)
    Simple as that.
    • Do we believe in human rights, or just US Citizen rights?

      If we believe only US Citizens should have rights, we are hypocrites.

  • by Agent0013 ( 828350 ) on Friday February 26, 2016 @05:01PM (#51594153) Journal

    When you want to sell in China, you need to decide if you can follow their rules. If you can, then you can sell there. In the USA, where Apple was formed, you can follow the rules also, and Apple has helped the police and FBI with plenty of warrants and probably non-warranted assistance. But when you see the FBI making a request that is against the counties constitution you than make a choice. Do you ignore it and let your own country become as low as the worst places in the world, like China, or do you fight it and show the courts and the citizens what assholes and terrorists we have running the three letter agencies.

    Don't forget, it's only this "ONE" phone. Except they could only keep that lie going for a day before they mentioned the other two phones that they would like cracked next, not to mention the hundreds that the New York police have lined up waiting next. When everything the FBI mouthpieces speak is shown to be a lie, then the courts should reject any argument they put forth as probable lie and throw them out of the court, if not directly into jail.

    • When you want to sell in China, you need to decide if you can follow their rules. If you can, then you can sell there. In the USA, where Apple was formed, you can follow the rules also, and Apple has helped the police and FBI with plenty of warrants and probably non-warranted assistance

      Indeed, if the US government says that Apple must remove encryption from its phone, then Apple will certainly comply. They may fight it, but if it comes to the end, they will comply.

      The primary difference is that the US people have more of a say in directing the actions of the US government. Will the government make a law saying Apple can't decrypt by default? It's up to us and our fellow citizens.

      • I see two points of interest in relation to the warrants the FBI has been granted.

        For one, what ever happened to the whole "The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects" that is in the 4th amendment. I guess with a warrant it still fits because it goes on with the text describing that warrants shall be necessary. But once they have this cracked version of the iOS, I don't believe they will wait for a warrant each time they want to open a phone. They certainly don't care

        • Number two, what if the warrant asked for impossible things.

          This is something that's been dealt with in legal theory. If you disobey a court order, then you can be thrown into jail for contempt of court. However, you cannot be thrown into jail if the task given to you is impossible (a more common example might be, a court requires a divorcee to give the car to his ex-wife. However, the man cannot comply, because he has already sold the car). IANALBIC (I am not a lawyer but I'm cool)

        • by Rakarra ( 112805 )

          For one, what ever happened to the whole "The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects" that is in the 4th amendment. I guess with a warrant it still fits because it goes on with the text describing that warrants shall be necessary. But once they have this cracked version of the iOS, I don't believe they will wait for a warrant each time they want to open a phone. They certainly don't care about warrants with some of the other things they have done in the past.

          The way I read it, the US Government is asking for all doors be outfitted with locks that our law enforcement agencies have the keys to. And of course if someone sneaks a key out and gives it to the mob, well then the mob has a key that can open every lock, too. Sneak out the key and give it to the Chinese Government, now the Chinese can open all the doors in the US, with no one being particularly able to trace how that happened. I can't see that as passing the muster of the 4th Amendment in the physical sp

  • by gurps_npc ( 621217 ) on Friday February 26, 2016 @05:04PM (#51594191) Homepage
    No. What The US is doing is worse than what China does.

    Apple is being ordered to do something that China has NEVER ordered Apple to do - to create software to let them censor.

    There is a huge difference between refusing to let someone sell encryption, and allowing them to create and sell encryption, then demanding they break it.

    If Apple obeyed the US in this task, then China would demand they do the same. In the end, China would end up having the same espionage ability that the US demanded.

    Look, the phone should have it's encryption broken. But the NSA should do it themselves instead of trying to get a private corporation to do it for them.

  • Apple: Good morning, Apple Computer.
    Customer: Hello, we need certain data on one of our citizens who is one of your customers. Name of "Syed Rizwan Farook".
    Apple: And you are ...
    Customer: The FB-- uh, the MSS [wikipedia.org].
    Apple: Just a moment, please ...
    Apple: We've transferred the information to your Tencent Weiyun inbox. Will there be anything else?
    Customer: No, thanks. Y'all have a good ... I mean, hold on ... ni shi wo de xiao ping guo.
    Apple: We strive to be. Let us know if you need more help, and thanks for ca

  • B/c Apple desires to do business in a foreign country and as such must pander to that country's gov't, they should do the same here where there are actual constitutional rights at stake?

  • The difference here is that in China the rules were spelled out from the beginning, not attempting to change the rules midstream in a way that runs counter to existing law and precedent and the Constitution itself or attempting to perversely use an overly broad, vaguely worded "all writs" act that was never intended for use with the object in question (the iPhone).
  • Well some hardtime for the VP's and CEO's will change there ways. Maybe trump can them to bend.

    Hell why just jail then for helping china. they did that to the nazis.

    • Yeah, how dare they avail themselves of the legal system in order to fight a legal order from a judge within the legal system. What a bunch of USA-bashing terrorist-conspiring fascists!

      Seriously, take a big step back and think about what you've said there. Because they don't fall in lock step behind some district court judge without question, they all deserve to be sent to prison? Have you even READ the Constitution, or any history behind that document's creation, or the people who wrote it?

  • Unless the host is the US, when you can walk in and do business whenever you want to because past aggression colonialism white people suck.

  • What a bizarre situation, if the Chinese government have more knowledge of how to get into an iPhone than the FBI do.

    That is the actual situation is it not?
    • Not so bizarre, when you think about it. China's government is studded with engineers, rather than the lawyers who dominate our own government. When lawyers run things, you get inanity like resetting the iCloud password of your suspect's newly seized iPhone, making it impossible to recover data by backing it up to Apple's servers.

  • While I find Apple bowing to political pressure in China for the government to be able to snoop on their citizens I do acknowledge the difficult position that Apple, or any technology company really, must be in.

    There is a reason that we see a lot of electronics built in China. Their rules on mining of rare earth minerals makes them very cheap. In the USA and most other nations the mining of rare earth minerals is inhibited on the rules of handling radioactive materials. What does radioactive materials ha

  • It's who the people are that influences Apple's decisions:

    In America the people are the consumers. They put the money in Apple's pockets. The government not so much.

    In China the people are the workforce. The government puts the money in Apple's pockets by making them a very cheap workforce.

    Of course they're siding with the Chinese government.

  • You get no where being a "freedom fighter" in China. You either kowtow to Chinese internet laws or you don't do business in China. Period. So this is irrelevant nonsense trying to cast aspersions on the principled and important stance Apple is taking in the US. Don't try this crap again.

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