By JEAN-PAUL AGUIRRE
If you have been keeping up with the news lately, you might have heard about the dispute between Apple and the federal government.
In short, the federal government is requesting Apple’s assistance in unlocking the iPhone of a San Bernardino attacker for information vital to its investigation. The reason the government requires Apple’s assistance is because the phone has a lock out function that will prohibit anyone from opening the phone after 10 failed attempts. In order to attain the information, the government is asking Apple to create a “master code” that will allow them to override the lock out function of any phone they choose.
Apple sees this as a massive privacy rights violation for their customers and has opted to deny the government’s request.
The media runs this story more and more as new information comes out, or when a public figure releases their statement about the situation and what they think either side should do.
Additionally, the recent vacancy in the U.S. Supreme Court, after Justice Scalia’s death, could be contributing to the story’s frequent airing.
There may be a good chance of this case reaching the U.S. Supreme Court if the two cannot reach a settlement. With the Court at a stalemate in regards to party affiliation, as well as the obstruction in the appointment of another justice, there is no telling which side would prevail if it reaches that point.
This situation has more significance than some people realize. This case could further protect the individual’s privacy, or it can provide the government with another tool for collecting intelligence and improving national security.
This story is not about a dispute between two prominent figures, but rather the implications of their dispute and the drastic repercussions that will follow. The media are trying to distinguish its gravity, as opposed to other stories. For that reason, the story is being covered appropriately.