Google and Microsoft are backing Apple’s legal filing against the FBI


Shortly after Apple CEO Tim Cook reaffirmed his belief that helping the FBI break the iPhone’s encryption would harm both his company and the American people, Apple filed a motion to vacate the district court order that demands it assist the FBI in this regard. Microsoft not only expressed its full support for the move, it announced on Thursday that it plans to file an amicus brief next week to show its support, with Google expressing the same support, and promising its own supporting brief in the near future.

Google plans to follow Microsoft in throwing its legal support behind Apple in its increasingly contentious dispute with the federal government around the iPhone connected with San Bernardino terror attacks, according to sources. At a congressional hearing on Thursday, Microsoft’s legal chief, Brad Smith, said that the company plans to file an amicus brief next week in support of Apple’s resistance to helping the FBI hack the phone. Google will deliver its own supporting brief “soon,” according to sources familiar with the company. Apple’s standoff with the feds is growing more heated each day. Apple filed documents in court today asking a judge to throw out the order demanding the company assist the FBI in getting past the phone’s encryption. Apple has also asked its tech peers to stand behind the company. Google, which controls Android, the world’s most popular mobile operating system, was the first tech company to publicly voice support for Apple when the case broke last week. CEO Sundar Pichai said the government demands set a “troubling precedent.”

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