Google, Facebook & Microsoft File Brief Supporting Apple

Google, Facebook and Microsoft File Legal Brief Supporting Apple iPhone Encryption Dispute

A group of tech companies plans to file an amicus brief contesting government arguments that the All Writs Act, a broad 1789 law that enables judges to require actions necessary to enforce their own orders, compels Apple to comply with its request. (Reuters) – Alphabet Inc’s Google, Facebook Inc, Microsoft Corp and several other Internet and technology companies will file a joint legal brief on Thursday asking a judge to support Apple Inc in its encryption battle with the U.S. government, sources familiar with the companies’ plans said. The effort is a rare display of unity and support for the iPhone maker from companies which are competitors in many areas, and shows the breadth of Silicon Valley’s opposition to the government’s anti-encryption effort. The fight between Apple and the government became public last month when the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation obtained a court order requiring Apple to write new software and take other measures to disable passcode protection and allow access to an iPhone used by one of the San Bernardino shooters in December. Apple has pushed back, arguing that such a move would set a dangerous precedent and threaten customer security. The clash has intensified a long-running debate over how much law enforcement and intelligence officials should be able to monitor digital communications. The group of tech companies plans to file what is known as an amicus brief—a form of comment from outside groups common in complex cases—to the Riverside, California, federal judge Sheri Pym. She will rule on Apple’s appeal of a court order that would force it to create software to unlock the iPhone. The companies will contest government arguments that the All Writs Act, a broad 1789 law that enables judges to require actions necessary to enforce their own orders, compels Apple to comply […]