Fight for the Future


FBI backs down in fight with Apple; Activists still plan to display more than 20,000 comments against backdoors outside courthouse today

Posted 21:38 EDT on March 21, 2016

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 22, 2016

Contact: Evan Greer, 978-852-6457, press@fightforthefuture.org

Fight for the Future and other groups will host a press conference at 11am Tuesday outside the courthouse where the Apple vs FBI hearing would have occurred

RIVERSIDE, CA––Digital rights group Fight for the Future, along with supporters from the ACLU and other groups, will still be gathering outside the U.S. District Courthouse in Riverside today, Tuesday, after the DOJ walked away from their attempt to force Apple to deliberately weaken the security of the iPhone. The group will hold a press conference outside the court at 11:00am PST to discuss the recent developments in the case, and will digitally display comments from more than 20,000 Internet users opposed to government backdoors in encryption.

“The FBI might be running away from their own hearing, but we’re not,” said Jeff Lyon, Chief Technology Officer at Fight for the Future, the group that collected the comments. “We’ll still be outside the courthouse to make sure those people’s voices are heard, because this fight is far from over. Encryption software protects our hospitals, airports, and water treatment facilities. The government’s continued effort to weaken encryption is not just an attack on our civil liberties–it’s a threat to our national security.”

“This case was never about a phone. It was a grab for power,” said Evan Greer, campaign director of Fight for the Future, “The FBI already had the capability to hack this phone using forensic tools, but they thought this case would be a slam dunk––a way for them to set a dangerous precedent that they’ve wanted for years. Instead, it appears they’re running away with their tail between their legs, trying to save face while they go. They knew they were going to lose, both in the court of law and the court of public opinion.”

The comments were collected through a major online campaign at SaveSecurity.org, which has already attracted support from several major tech companies and advocacy groups including reddit, Google, Wikimedia, DuckDuckGo, CREDO Mobile, Private Internet Access, Thunderclap, Goldenfrog, the ACLU, Campaign for Liberty, OpenMedia, Access, Freedom of the Press Foundation, as well as notable technology experts including Bruce Schneier and Cory Doctorow.

The FBI canceled their own hearing less than a day before lawyers from the DOJ and Apple were scheduled to square off in Riverside, claiming that they had found another way to break into the iPhone.

Fight for the Future is best known for organizing some of the largest online protests in history, including the SOPA blackout against online censorship, Reset the Net to promote encryption and fight government surveillance, and the Internet Slowdown for net neutrality.

Fight for the Future expert staff are available for interviews about the #SaveSecurity campaign and the broader implications of the Apple vs. FBI court case. Contact: press@fightforthefuture.org

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