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Bill Gates doesn't think that iPhone FBI crackdown would set precedent

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February 23, 2016

Microsoft founder Bill Gates has weighed all the pros and cons in the battle between Apple and the FBI as to whether the iPhone maker should unlock the mobile device of the San Bernardino murderer, denying that such a move would create a dangerous precedent for back doors.

From the beginning, Apple has categorically refused to allow the U.S. government access to the iPhone of Syed Rizwan Farook who killed fourteen people in California last December, arguing that such a move would set a “dangerous precedent that threatens everyone’s civil liberties.”

Gates said-- "This is a specific case where the government is asking for access to information. They are not asking for some general thing, they are asking for a particular case.” He said: “Apple has access to the information, they are just refusing access.”

He added-- “It is no different than the question of should anybody ever have been able to tell the phone company to get information, should anybody be able to get at bank records.”

"Let’s say that the bank had tied a ribbon round the disk drive and said, ‘Don’t make me cut this ribbon because you’ll make me cut it many times,'" Gates added.

But a number of Silicon Valley giants have backed Apple’s stance, including Facebook, Twitter and Google. In a separate interview with BBC news, Gates called for a public debate on the issue: “I think we expect governments to find out everything they can about terrorism."

He said it would be "worth having a debate as to the extent to which people are comfortable about how information the government has."

In the email Cook said-- "That tension should not be resolved by corporations that sell stuff for a living. It also should not be resolved by the FBI, which investigates for a living. It should be resolved by the American people deciding how we want to govern ourselves in a world we have never seen before."

That missive was in response to FBI director James Comey who said-- “We don’t want to break anyone’s encryption or set a master key loose on the land. I hope thoughtful people will take the time to understand that. Maybe the phone holds the clue to finding more terrorists.”

Source: Bill Gates.

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