U.S. wireless carrier Verizon has finally chimed with its two cents regarding Apple’s ongoing encryption battle against the FBI.
Verizon CEO Lowell McAdam told Reuters Wednesday the carrier is in favor of “the availability of strong encryption with no backdoors.”
Rather than being settled in the courts on an “ad hoc basis,” however, McAdam said the issue is one that needs to be taken up by lawmakers in Congress.
The comments come in the wake of a ruling from a U.S. magistrate ordering Apple to help investigators at the FBI infiltrate an iPhone used by one of the gunmen in the San Bernardino shooting.
Though the FBI has said the tool it is seeking would only be used once and would be device- specific, Apple has argued the agency is seeking a “master key” it considers ‘too dangerous to create.”
McAdam joins several tech company executives – including those from giants like Twitter, Facebook, Google, and Yahoo – who have voiced their support for Apple.
Facebook said a decision in favor of the FBI’s demands would set a “chilling precedent and obstruct companies’ efforts to secure their products.”
Those sentiments were echoed last week by Gary Miliefsky, CEO of cyber security company SnoopWall, who said Apple’s hypothetical consent to hack one of its devices would serve as a signal to criminals that a previously unknown backdoor to its devices exists.
On Thursday, FBI Director James Comey said the case presents the “hardest question” he’s seen in government and noted the resolution will require “negotiation and conversation.”
Congressional lawmakers this week announced plans to introduce legislation that would create a U.S. commission to explore how law enforcement can access encrypted data without trampling on citizens’ privacy rights, The Hill reported. The bipartisan measure is predicted to garner broad support with its expected introduction next week.
Verizon, along with the other tier-1 providers in the United States, carriers the iPhone for both its pre- and postpaid customers.
Filed Under: Industry regulations