Apple gets significant support in its legal dispute with the FBI over encryption

As the FBI and Apple are disputing in court over FBI’s request for Apple to assist in unlocking an iPhone, many technology and Internet companies are lining up beside Apple and filling formal briefs of support. Such companies include, among others: Microsoft, Amazon, Google, Facebook, Yahoo, Cisco (in one brief), and Twitter, LinkedIn, eBay, and Airbnb (in another brief). Among the many concerns raised, the companies argue that, if the FBI wins this case, it will then set a precedent for other similar or even more dangerous requests that will undermine not only the security mechanisms incorporated into tech products, but also the privacy of their users. The United Nations special rapporteur for freedom of expression, David Kaye, has also submitted a letter to court, saying that the FBI risks violating the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. A list of briefs and letters submitted to court in support of Apple can be found here.