Bill Gates alongside 51% of Americans wants the iPhone to be unlocked

bill gates

The FBI is still trying to access Syed’s iPhone, (a terrorist involved in the killing of 14 people alongside his wife), since they couldn’t they requested for a “tool” that would be like a master key, to remove pass-code features like time limits and data erasure measures so as to access the iPhone. Apple has maintained that creating such a tool would compromise security for all Apple devices and has refused to assist the FBI.

The heat is still on as to whether to unlock or not to unlock the San Bernardino shooter’s iPhone, and now Bill Gates alongside 51% of Americans has sided with the FBI. In an interview with Financial Times, the Microsoft founder simply denies Tim Cook’s view of the FBI asking for a “backdoor”. Though Apple CEO Tim Cook believes that unlocking one device would set a dangerous precedent, Bill Gates on the other hand doesn’t believe it would. He also compared it to when a bank or phone company is asked to give up records for a particular person.

This is a specific case where the government is asking for access to information. They are not asking for some general thing, they are asking for a particular case.

Bill Gates told the Financial Times.

“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”.

Gates’ comments contradicts other major tech companies like Facebook, Twitter, Google and much of Silicon Valley who have supported Tim Cook’s stance against the unlocking the terrorists iPhone.

According to FBI Director James Comey, the request was “not trying to set a precedent” but rather about “the victims and justice.” The FBI also confirmed that it had worked with San Bernardino county officials to reset the iCloud password of Syed Farook. Apple said that had the FBI not attempted to reset the password, the company would have been able to have access to the needed information since the iCloud backups would have still been accessible.

Not everyone supports Apple

A report from Pew Research Center shows that not all Americans agrees with Apple. From the report about 38% of Americans say Apple should leave the iPhone locked so as to ensure the security of its other users’ information; 11% didn’t offer an opinion regarding the question; while 51% agrees with the FBI that the iPhone should be unlocked. The survey conducted had to do with about 1,002 individuals from February 18th to February 21st.

Chart provided by Pew Research Center

Chart provided by Pew Research Center

As the standoff between the Department of Justice and Apple Inc. continues over an iPhone used by one of the suspects in the San Bernardino terrorist attacks, 51% say Apple should unlock the iPhone to assist the ongoing FBI investigation.

Pew Research Center

Here’s another chart provided by PW Research Center

Chart provided by Pew Research Center

Chart provided by Pew Research Center

From the report it was noticed that about 50% of individuals that own a smartphone agrees the iPhone should be unlocked, compared with 41% who say they should not unlock the phone. Among those who do not own a smartphone, 52% say Apple should unlock the San Bernardino iPhone, compared with just 33% who say Apple should not do this.

Apple is aware of this fact and has published an FAQ on its site. The FAQ explains the dangers of unlocking a smartphone, stating that it could potentially invalidate all of the security features Apple built for the iPhone in the first place. Additionally, creating a backdoor for this phone would set a legal precedent for similar cases in the future.

That been said, what do you think? should the iPhone be unlocked?


William HenryBillGates III (born October 28, 1955) is an American business magnate, entrepreneur, philanthropist, investor, and computer programmer. In 1975, Gates and Paul Allen co-founded Microsoft, which became the world’s largest PC software company. Gates is one of the best-known entrepreneurs of the personal computer revolution. Later in his career Gates pursued a number of philanthropic endeavors, donating large amounts of money to various charitable organizations and scientific research programs through the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, established in 2000. Gates is currently the wealthiest person in the world with a net worth of US$77.3 billion.



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  1. James

    I’m with Bill Gates!… There’s no big deal here… Unlock just one terrorist iPhone, destroy the process and let’s call it a day.


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