Italian Father Pleads His Case After Apple vs. FBI Dispute
The legal case between Apple and the FBI may be over, but requests for help getting access to iPhones haven’t stopped.
The latest plea comes from Italian architect Leonardo Fabbretti, Agence France Presse reports. Fabbretti is the father of a 13-year-old boy who died from cancer last year, claiming he just wants to see his dead son’s photos, but he can’t because they’re stuck inside his password-locked iPhone.
Apple CEO Tim Cook has said before that inventing that kind of breachable system is just too dangerous. That’s what Cook argued recently when Apple told the FBI it wouldn’t help build this kind of software to tap into San Bernardino shooter Syed Rizwan Farook’s iPhone.
“We think it’s fundamentally wrong,” said Cook in a recent cover story for Time. “And not just wrong from a privacy point of view, but wrong from a public safety point of view.”
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Fabbretti, according to the AFP, said he understands all the concerns floating around about privacy and security, but he thinks his own case is special.
“Although I share your philosophy in general, I think Apple should offer solutions for exceptional cases like mine,” the father wrote in a letter to Apple CEO Tim Cook, quoted by the AFP.
Apple opposed that same line of “exceptional case” reasoning in its recent court case against the FBI, stressing it can’t create a backdoor system for one phone without leaving that door wide open and making other phones vulnerable to attacks by hackers or terrorists.
In a surprise move, the FBI dropped its own case on Monday, revealing that it accessed Farook’s iPhone’s data with help from an unnamed third-party entity.
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Now Fabbretti is hoping for the same kind of workaround in his plea, telling the AFP that Israeli firm Cellebrite (the same third-party company rumored to be helping the FBI) has offered to try to crack into his dead son’s phone, free of charge.
However,Fabbretti’s son’s iPhone 6 is a newer model than the iPhone 5c that the FBI has on its hands in the San Bernardino case, so it’s not clear yet whether or not it can be successfully hacked.
Apple did not immediately respond to Fortune’s request for comment about the letter.