It seems that terrorists have used encryption to avoid detection, and that has made it extremely difficult, if not outright impossible, to track them. ISIS has proven themselves to be the most tech-savvy terrorist group in the world, and it is using these apps to avoid unwanted attention. While these apps are designed to help people keep their information private, whatever that information might be, it is clear that they are being used illicitly.
We also refused to add a ‘backdoor’ into any of our products because that undermines the protections we’ve built in. And we can’t unlock your device for anyone because you hold the key — your unique password. We’re committed to using powerful encryption because you should know the data on your device and the information you share with others is protected.”
In short, only you can unlock your information. To gain access to your phone or computer, you have to have your unique password, and without that, even the company itself cannot take a peek into what you store on your iPhone.
In the post-Snowden world, this sounded like a great idea. Since the National Security Agency’s tactics for tracking personal information have been revealed, many people felt that the United States Government overstepped its bounds, making privacy a central, bipartisan concern. By and large, most people don’t have anything unlawful to hide on their cell phones, tablets or computers, but the principle of the matter made Apple’s stance on privacy very appealing.
But, after the terrorist attacks in Paris, should we rethink our dedication to privacy? In the United States after September 11, 2001, we decided to sacrifice some of our privacy to keep us safe, but are we willing to do the same thing now? While we can appreciate Apple’s reluctance to give authorities access to our information, if it could prevent terrorist attacks like the one in Paris, would it be worth it? Obviously, that’s massively oversimplifying the argument, but it is something to think about.