HOW CEOS HAVE RESPONDED TO APPLE VS. FBI
While public opinion may be divided on whether Apple should unlock the San Bernardino terrorist's iPhone, leaders at technology companies are forming their own opinions on the matter. Check out what some of them had to say below.
- •Tim Cook (CEO of Apple)Apple Chief Executive Tim Cook said that the order was "chilling" and "dangerous" and was essentially asking the U.S. tech giant to "hack" its own users. He continues to fight the order.
- •Warren Buffett (CEO of Berkshire Hathaway)"If there's something major, something that the attorney general or the head of the FBI would be willing to sign, and go to a judge on, and say, 'We need this information and we need it now,' I would be willing to trust that official to behave in a proper matter," Buffett said. "Privacy has its limits," Berkshire Hathaway's chairman and CEO told "Squawk Box," two days after releasing his annual letter. He said he's not taking sides in the Apple versus FBI battle.
- •Bill Gates (Co-founder of Microsoft)Bucks the trend: "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." "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 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'."
- •Mark Zuckerberg (CEO of Facebook)“We’re sympathetic with Apple,” Zuckerberg said. “We believe encryption is a good thing that people will want.”
- •Sundar Pichai (CEO of Google)Pichai defended Cook in a series of tweets, including one saying, "Could be a troubling precedent."
- •Jan Koum (CEO of WhatsApp)"I have always admired Tim Cook for his stance on privacy and Apple's efforts to protect user data. … We must not allow this dangerous precedent to be set. Today our freedom and our liberty is at stake."
- •Tim Bajarin (President of Creative Strategies)"If [Cook] gave the FBI the 'back door' encryption code, it would set a precedent," Bajarin told CNBC. "It is true that [the government] is positioning this as an isolated case, but because of the way our justice system works, it becomes a precedent, and once a precedent is set, [the government] or other cases can come back and use this to try and get the same action in the future," he said.
- •Lowell McAdam (CEO of Verizon)McAdam said that cases in which preventing the destruction of data is feasible include investigating terrorism and serious crimes. "These conditions must be strictly defined by law, not arrived at haphazardly on an ad hoc or case-by-case basis, as in the Apple case. However, we oppose any solution that would place direct technical access in the hands of law enforcement; rather, it’s vital that such tools remain in the hands of the provider, not government authorities."