A centuries US law is now being put to use to force Apple to help authorities to access encrypted data on the iPhone.
The US authorities do not like that Apple has introduced some security measures that make it impossible for Apple to pry into people’s private data. The authorities would like to see Apple introduced a backdoor so that it can gain access to people’s data. However, Apple has flatly rejected the authorities’ wishes.
It has now emerged that the authorities have dug an old US law up called “All Writs Act”. It dates back to 1789 and allows authorities to ask people or companies to do anything to provide assistance in a criminal investigation. The only limit is that they ask for may not be illegal. In addition, it must not be of a general nature. It is related to a specific investigation.
The idea compared to Apple is that the authorities via the “All Writs Act” may ask Apple to do everything they can help to unlock an iPhone up. Apple can not resist but must obey orders. Normally, Apple could say to the authorities that if they want decrypted data, then they must do it yourself. Now the authorities via the “All Writs Act” ask Apple to contribute their expertise.
Google has previously been involved in a similar case and had then cleaned up their act.