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Justice Department Appeals Against Pro-Apple Decision In New York Drug Case

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Well, it was expected sooner or later. Last week, in a case similar to the high-profile San Bernardino case, Magistrate Judge Orenstein in Brooklyn had given a ruling in favor of Apple saying that the justice department could not force it to open the phone of a drug dealer.  And now the justice department has appealed against that decision.

Apple is not being asked to do anything it does not currently have the capability to do. This case in no way upends the balance between privacy and security.

said the US Justice Department in its filing referring to the old iPhone running on iOS 7 which does not have the encryption technology and can be accessed by Apple.

The Government further claimed that previously Apple had complied with similar requests and helped the Government in many investigations.

To this Apple has argued that the facts, technology and its understanding of the law have changed over time. In response to the filing of Justice Department, Apple reiterated its previous viewpoint concerning the misuse of All Writs Act in such cases leading to violation of the constitution.

Judge Orenstein ruled the FBI’s request would ‘thoroughly undermine fundamental principles of the Constitution’ and we agree. We share the Judge’s concern that misuse of the All Writs Act would start us down a slippery slope that threatens everyone’s safety and privacy,

said Apple in a statement following the filing.

The judgment of Judge Orenstein was also used by Apple in its appeal in the Congress for San Bernadino case resisting against the FBI demands to unlock the iPhone.

Although both the cases are different with one being a drug trafficking case while the other a terrorist attack, but the government is relying on All Writs Act to make Apple help in the investigation by opening the iPhone (in the latter case making separate software to bypass security and access data).

However, Apple has so far refused to do so claiming that it was “unconstitutional” and would set a “dangerous precedent”.

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