Apple's Tim Cook says firm has been helping with UK terror investigations

Yolanda Curtis
June 9, 2017

Time and again, law enforcement officials have criticized Apple's high privacy standards.

He further goes on to mention that the said process of handing down information isn't anything new. The government has said that it plans to clamp down on violent extremism, and has arrested several people with alleged ties to recent attacks on citizens, including a suicide bombing in May that killed 22 people at the Manchester Arena.

Chief executive Tim Cook told Bloomberg TV: "We have been co-operating with the UK Government not only in law enforcement kind of matters but on some of the attacks". The company was even dragged to court previous year by the Federal Bureau of Investigation over the privacy issue. Cook didn't specify which attacks led to the company's cooperation. Apple's high privacy standards and tough encryption have been criticized by law enforcement officials and the company clashed a year ago in court with the Federal Bureau of Investigation over the issue.

Cook noted that rather than breaking its own encryption and leaving all users vulnerable to hackers, companies could instead expose meta data - information like when calls or texts were received, and to and from whom. In the past, the USA firm has been subjected to constant flak for its support of digital services that run on end-to-end encryption. However, it has helped the government with information it has relating to the terror attacks. However, Apple refused to do so, claiming that there is no way to guarantee control over such software that can bypass the iPhone's encryption.

The Cupertino, California-based company has set its stall out strongly against the United Kingdom government's Investigatory Powers Bill, which aims to weaken encryption and make the data of millions of law-abiding citizens less secure. "Metadata, if you're putting together a profile, is very important", said Cook.

Still, Cook said that he will remain an advisor to the president.

Cook also said he didn't join any of U.S. President Donald Trump's business advisory councils because he thinks those groups aren't "terribly productive". "He didn't decide what I wanted him to decide..."

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