Bill Gates Denies Reports he "Supports The FBI" in Apple Case

Bill Gates Denies Reports he "Supports The FBI" in Apple Case

Bill Gates

Bill Gates says he doesn't support the FBI in its case against Apple.. but that doesn't mean he supports Apple either.

Yesterday, the Financial Times reported that Bill Gates had "broke ranks" among Silicon Valley's finest, by offering his support of the FBI in its landmark case against Apple. Now, in an interview with Bloomberg, he has denied this report, stressing that he actually doesn't fully "support" either party, and both sides have good arguments.

"I do believe that with the right safeguards, there are cases where the government, on our behalf - like stopping terrorism, which could get worse in the future - that that is valuable," said Gates, adding that we needed to strike a balance between safeguards against government power and security.

Gates, unlike his other tech contemporaries who view the issue as black and white, believes that more discussion is required on the issue.

When asked what his personal stance was on the case and it's potential verdicts, Gates said "the courts are going to decide this [case]" and "these issues will be decided in Congress."

In his interview with the Financial times, Gates criticized Apple CEO Tim Cook's staunch refusal of the FBI order, commenting "It is no different than [the question of] should anybody ever have been able to tell the phone company to get information, should anybody be able to get at bank records. Let's say the bank had tied a ribbon round the disk drive and said, 'Don't make me cut this ribbon because you'll make me cut it many times'."

Once again, Bill Gates has proved himself to be the most sensible man in the tech industry, opting to discuss and analyze over jumping onto the "us vs. them" bandwagon.

Source: The Verge

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He is shrewd, that is a fact. I would be too if I had shit tons of money and relied on good will to keep it coming.

If the case does not go in Apple's favour, how long before Apple says it's pulling up stakes and moving to a different country?

008Zulu:
If the case does not go in Apple's favour, how long before Apple says it's pulling up stakes and moving to a different country?

Apple won't up sticks and move to another country because all the democratic countries in the world are doing the similar things. Given Apple's somewhat cavalier attitude to paying tax, they won't be moving because it will cost them 100s of millions in tax. The shareholders who actually own the company are not going to be clamouring to de list from the NY stock exchange, in fact they are more likely to sack Tim Cook if he attempted to move. Lastly the US or UK government could bankrupt Apple in a day where ever they move in the world. All the major banks and most of the minor ones do business in New York and London. This means that Apple, under existing powers, can be cut out of the world's financial system at the stroke of a pen. The US government did it to Iran and is slowly strangling Russia by cutting it out of the credit market, Apple is small beer in those terms.

albino boo:
democratic countries

Therein lies their ace card. Apple is so ingrained, and saturated, in the American public that what do you suppose might happen should the federal government move on Apple? You think the millions of Apple fanboys would stay quiet, or would they speak up, on voting day? What about all the celeb's that have shilled for Apple, do you suspect they or their legions of fans would stay quiet? The government can have all the pens it wants, Apple has the people.

008Zulu:

albino boo:
democratic countries

Therein lies their ace card. Apple is so ingrained, and saturated, in the American public that what do you suppose might happen should the federal government move on Apple? You think the millions of Apple fanboys would stay quiet, or would they speak up, on voting day? What about all the celeb's that have shilled for Apple, do you suspect they or their legions of fans would stay quiet? The government can have all the pens it wants, Apple has the people.

You are assuming that everyone supports Apple but twitter is not a an accurate reflection of the counrty. I would point that Donald Trump is going from strength to strength despite overwhelming hostility on social media.

albino boo:
You are assuming that everyone supports Apple but twitter is not a an accurate reflection of the counrty.

Apple just happens to be who's in the public light right now. People will get behind Apple simply because the FBI/government have been portrayed as overbearing bullies. It's a classic underdog story. And as for Twitter not being an accurate reflection, that might be true, but social media is a very powerful weapon.

Personally, I think the government will back down.

Gates really skirted around that question like a real politician there. If only it wasn't so blatant. Surely it doesn't matter what he thinks as he doesn't have any control over what Microsoft does now, does he?

008Zulu:

albino boo:
You are assuming that everyone supports Apple but twitter is not a an accurate reflection of the counrty.

Apple just happens to be who's in the public light right now. People will get behind Apple simply because the FBI/government have been portrayed as overbearing bullies. It's a classic underdog story. And as for Twitter not being an accurate reflection, that might be true, but social media is a very powerful weapon.

Personally, I think the government will back down.

You have no evidence that the public beyond twitter support Apple's stance. The whole occupy movement came to nothing, once again twitter is not an accurate representation of what the public thinks. Furthermore the government will not back down. They are the ones whose job is on the line when the next Bataclan style attack happens. The FBI has responsibility to protect the public and giving terrorists secure data storage and communications will impair the ability to do that. The state has access to all sorts of records that would be ordinarily private but after the production of court order they are opened. It's worth remembering it's not the FBI telling Apple but a federal court so it's after due process.

As a last point its almost certain that the NSA can crack the phone but that would not count as evidence in a court of law unless the NSA revealed how it cracked the phone. The NSA will not be willing to reveal cryptographic techniques for obvious reasons. The government is following due process to obtain evidence in line with obtaining evidence in every other criminal investigation. If the government concedes then it will creating a precedent that will allow everything else to make the same argument.

"to strike a balance between safeguards against government power and security"

the 'balance' has gone way too much in the direction of 'government power', already, dear Billy.

Did anyone actually expect anything different? Especially after the disaster called Windows 10?

That's not how encryption works Bill. You do not create a back door. That is always, always, always a bad idea. Too many ways to fuck it up.

Haha, he certainly avoided the "us vs them" bandwagon, but only by saying basically nothing at all.

He didn't opt to "discuss and analyze" anything, he just avoided saying anything of substance, and then even went and backtracked on that when the Financial Times tried to pull him in anyway.

... You may very well be right about him being the most sensible man in the industry.

Lunncal:
Haha, he certainly avoided the "us vs them" bandwagon, but only by saying basically nothing at all.

Really easily explained. He's not being shrewd or political or anything. He's simply not fully informed about the case. We're talking about a guy with a history of statements that sound like nothing every time somebody is trying to force him to give an opinion about something he's not fully researched. He's only guilty of not trying to take a stance when he doesn't have all the facts.

People really don't like nuance. If only life could be that black and white.

Steven Bogos:

Once again, Bill Gates has proved himself to be the most sensible man in the tech industry, opting to discuss and analyze over jumping onto the "us vs. them" bandwagon.

so dancing around issue and having no opinion is sensible thing to do now?

Baresark:
He is shrewd, that is a fact. I would be too if I had shit tons of money and relied on good will to keep it coming.

he has donated half of his fortune to variuos charities, many of whom he runs himself. he may be shrewd, but hes not greedy.

He's always the richest man or he is overtaked by Carlos Slim Helu or Warren Buffet ?

 

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