In Apple’s epic courtroom showdown with the FBI, Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates on Tuesday revealed himself to favor the G-men.
Gates played down Apple’s concerns over breaking into an iPhone — and predicted the tech giant would comply with whatever the court decides.
“There’s no doubt Apple can make this information available, and I don’t think there’s any doubt that when the courts eventually rule that they’ll follow whatever the court says to do,” Gates told the Financial Times.
The world’s wealthiest man went on to call the discussion of privacy rights versus the government’s need to access data for national security “a good debate.”
But unlike senior execs at Twitter, Yahoo! and Facebook, Gates said he supports the government’s contention that unblocking encrypted data from San Bernardino terrorist Syed Rizwan Farook’s iPhone makes sense.
“I do believe there are sets of safeguards where the government shouldn’t have to be completely blind,” Gates told Bloomberg later Tuesday.
Farook and his wife were killed in a shootout with cops after massacring 14 people and wounding 22 others during a Dec. 2 attack on Farook’s co-workers.
Meanwhile, Apple’s fight with the feds isn’t limited to the San Bernardino case. Prosecutors have asked the tech giant to help them unlock 14 other iPhones in pending cases in various jurisdictions, including two in Manhattan federal court and another in Brooklyn, a filing unsealed in Brooklyn federal court states.
Meanwhile, a pro-Apple demonstration was held Tuesday evening outside the Apple Store at 767 Fifth Ave.
“I think it’s wrong as a matter of law and wrong as a matter of policy,” said demonstrator Howard Kalodner, 82, a retired lawyer and Western New England Law School dean who lives on the Upper East Side.