Although most of the attention on Apple’s privacy standoff with the government has so far focused on the United States, the U.S. isn’t the only place where Apple’s fighting with the authorities over iPhone encryption.
In France, politician Yann Galut, a member of the country’s Socialist Party, has submitted an amendment to a bill designed to strengthen the French government’s fight against terror — by arguing that Apple should pay €1 million per smartphone if it does not “promptly” agree to unlock devices when asked to by law enforcement.
Last year, eight smartphones belonging to possible terrorists were unable to be accessed by authorities in France, provoking concern about data encryption.
“We are faced with a legal vacuum when it comes to data encryption, and it’s blocking judicial investigations,” Yann Galut said. “Only money will force these extremely powerful companies like Apple and Google to comply.”
Galut doesn’t seem to be all that clued-up about the issue in question, though. He claims that Apple is one of several companies, “hiding behind a supposed privacy protection, but … quick to make commercial use of personal data that they’re collecting.”
While this could certainly be argued with regards to Google, Apple has long taken a different approach to user data — most famously articulated when Tim Cook told Charlie Rose that, “[customers] are not our product,” during a television interview.