Apple’s Two-Face Privacy Turnover

The New York Times reported Apple turned over personal information about someone working in the White House via a subpoena and only three years later informed the person involved.

Forget the juicy political angle of this story the press eagerly regurgitates. Focus instead on what Apple’s CEO Tim Cook vowed he would never do; hand over personal information about Apple customers. I wrote way back when that stance of a technology company subverting the sovereign rule of law would be and should be unattainable.

Tim Cook is simply wrong when he thinks he has the right to be the unprotected backdoor to nation-state sovereignty. Simply put, the trust in collective freedom cannot be protected by a vile maxim of individual freedom. Even as a technology company you happen to disagree with the definition and implementation of collective freedom to each sovereignty their own. The world cannot and will not be ruled by the absolutism of control by any single entity, that entity including a technology company.

Of course, the privacy of people should be protected and only be released by a court order. That is the proper balance between protecting collective freedom and personal freedom we must deploy to instill trust in a healthy society.

Tim Cook’s holier than thou stance on privacy falls with this incident. As it should. Nobody is above the law, and if they attempt, the laws should be rewritten.

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