The ongoing battle between law enforcement agencies and companies who champion the data scrambling technology took a new turn with U.S. Department of Justice attempting to compel Apple to build software that bypass non-encryption features of the iPhone in order to get at its currently encrypted contents. Internet Policy Observatory Pakistan supports Apple in this case and strongly opposes US government’s action.
“Almost every Government around the world have range of tactical tools such as stingray devices, wiretapping, geo-tracking and data-mining which can strengthen law enforcement and counter-terrorism if properly pursued”, said Arzak Khan, Director Internet Policy Observatory Pakistan. “Creating back doors to hack in to secure devices will not only undermine consumer confidence in technology but most importantly empower cyber criminals and totalitarian regimes”.
“The US Government should look at the transnational nature of the internet and its policy making given that most US internet giants like Apple, Google and others operate globally have to comply with local laws in places where they operate, this also includes countries having a very poor score card on human rights. We should refrain from adopting a policy that would allow such countries to exploit backdoors for silencing dissent” added, Arzak Khan.
“It is critical that both North and South work collectively for facing the online challenges in defeating the criminals but we also need to ensure that the internet remains a platform for freedom of expression and uncensored information otherwise, it will have a negative impact on social economic development ” said, Arzak Khan.