Samsung won’t commit to supporting Apple in FBI standoff


Samsung supports Apple… kind of. Photo: Kārlis Dambrāns/Flickr CC

Chiming in on one of the biggest tech stories of the year, Samsung says that customer privacy is “extremely important to it” and argues against software backdoors — but won’t totally commit to supporting Apple, either.

In a statement, Samsung writes that: “Ensuring trust in our products and services is our top priority. Our phones are embedded with encryption that protects privacy and content, and they do not have backdoors. When required to do so, and within the law, we work with law enforcement agencies. However, any requirement to create a backdoor could undermine consumers’ trust.”

But it won’t go all the way, and says that it has “not decided whether to file an amicus brief” in the current Apple standoff against the FBI, concerning the order that Apple help hack an iPhone 5c belonging to one of the suspected terrorists in last year’s San Bernadino shooting. Were Apple to file a friend-of-the-court amicus brief it would demonstrate Samsung’s support of Apple.

Many tech companies and individuals, including Google, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and others, have so far expressed their support for Apple.

To my mind, Samsung’s statement is a disappointing example of sitting on the fence: trying to gain some publicity by talking about the importance of privacy, but refusing (so far) to stick its neck out and support the company at the center of this story.

Source: Bloomberg