Google Breaks Its Silence, Sides with Apple on FBI Encryption Case

Google CEO Sundar Pichai announced he's standing with Tim Cook and Apple's decision. He agreed that complying with the FBI order to create a backdoor for the iPhone would set a dangerous precedent.

Will Google stand with Apple or remain silent on this unprecedented issue?

Late last night, many breathed a sigh of relief when Google's CEO Sundar Pichai announced his support of Apple CEO Tim Cook's decision. Pichai agreed that complying with an FBI order to create a backdoor for the iPhone would set a dangerous precedent.

Apple published a letter on its site earlier this week explaining the reasons why the company would not do as ordered. Cook's response was a thoughtful multi-paragraph argument that weighed the present need to find justice in the San Bernardino case against the larger precedent it would set in the future.

Pichai's vote of support came in the form of multiple tweets:

1/5 Important post by @tim_cook. Forcing companies to enable hacking could compromise users’ privacy

— sundarpichai (@sundarpichai) February 17, 2016

2/5 We know that law enforcement and intelligence agencies face significant challenges in protecting the public against crime and terrorism

— sundarpichai (@sundarpichai) February 17, 2016

3/5 We build secure products to keep your information safe and we give law enforcement access to data based on valid legal orders

— sundarpichai (@sundarpichai) February 17, 2016

4/5 But that’s wholly different than requiring companies to enable hacking of customer devices & data. Could be a troubling precedent

— sundarpichai (@sundarpichai) February 17, 2016

5/5 Looking forward to a thoughtful and open discussion on this important issue

— sundarpichai (@sundarpichai) February 17, 2016

Pichai's stance may indicate a shift in priority within software development. Google's business model thrives off information it collects from its users. But Google may feel it has a responsibility to create an Android OS with stronger security features.

As to how Google would regulate its open-source software is questionable. Google's relationship with its Android OS is quite different than Apple's. Where Apple controls all levels of its hardware and software, Google merely releases Android and allows manufacturers to tinker with it as they wish.

Whether Pichai's tweets are also meant to indicate some change in the way Google operates is uncertain. However, it's safe to assume Apple and Google have found something they can finally agree on.


Photo Credit: Google

Natalie has been writing professionally for about 6 years. After graduating from Ithaca College with a degree in Feature Writing, she snagged a job at where she had the opportunity to review all the latest consumer gadgets. Since then she has become a writer for hire, freelancing for various websites. In her spare time, you may find her riding her motorcycle, reading YA novels, hiking, or playing video games. Follow her on Twitter: @nat_schumaker

LinkedIn meets Tinder in this mindful networking app

Swipe right to make the connections that could change your career.

Getty Images
Swipe right. Match. Meet over coffee or set up a call.

No, we aren't talking about Tinder. Introducing Shapr, a free app that helps people with synergistic professional goals and skill sets easily meet and collaborate.

Keep reading Show less

Originally Poe envisioned a parrot, not a raven

Quoth the parrot — "Nevermore."

The Green Parrot by Vincent van Gogh, 1886
Culture & Religion
  • Edgar Allan Poe (1809–1949) is considered one of America's great writers.
  • Poe penned his most famous poem, The Raven, in his 30s.
  • Originally, the poem's feathered subject was a bit flamboyant.
Keep reading Show less

Your body’s full of stuff you no longer need. Here's a list.

Evolution doesn't clean up after itself very well.

Image source: Ernst Haeckel
Surprising Science
  • An evolutionary biologist got people swapping ideas about our lingering vestigia.
  • Basically, this is the stuff that served some evolutionary purpose at some point, but now is kind of, well, extra.
  • Here are the six traits that inaugurated the fun.
Keep reading Show less
  • Facebook and Google began as companies with supposedly noble purposes.
  • Creating a more connected world and indexing the world's information: what could be better than that?
  • But pressure to return value to shareholders came at the expense of their own users.
Keep reading Show less