In an exclusive interview today, Apple CEO Tim Cook explained to ABC News anchor David Muir why he refused to create software that would help the FBI break into an iPhone used by one of the San Bernardino, California, shooters.
Muir: To some people at home listening to this argument – who understand where you're coming from – who might say this was a terrorist attack on U.S. soil and if ever there was a case that Apple would make some sort of exception that this might be that moment. Do you really want to plant the flag on privacy and safety on Syed Farook's iPhone?
Cook: "I think safety of the public is incredibly important -- safety of our kids, safety of our family is very important," Cook said. "The protection of people's data is incredibly important, and so the trade-off here is we know that doing this could expose people to incredible vulnerabilities."
"I think safety of the public is incredibly important -- safety of our kids, safety of our family is very important. The protection of people's data is incredibly important, and so the trade-off here is we know that doing this could expose people to incredible vulnerabilities. This is not something that we would create [a Master Key]. This would be bad for America. It would also set a precedent that I believe many people in America would be offended by. And so when you think about those that are knowns, compared to something that might be there, I believe that we're making the right choice.'
Muir: "But in your quiet moments do you have any concerns that you might be able to prevent a terrorist attack by breaking into that phone?" Cook didn't want to answer that directly. Instead Cook replied, "David, some things are hard and some things are right. And some things are both. This is one of those things."
Muir asked Cook, "You have talked with the President before on these issues of privacy and security. Are you disappointed there wasn't more dialogue with the administration before this swift action from the Justice Department?
Cook swiftly answered, "Yes and I think there should have been. This filing … we found out about the filing from the press and I don't think that's the way the railway should be run. And I don't think that something so important to this country should be handled in this way."
From Cook's statement, it's clear that all of us who owned an iPhone prior to the iPhone 6 were always in a position of being incredibly vulnerable to hackers. Hmm, I don't remember Apple ever making that very important point during any iPhone keynote.
ABC has stated on their website that their extended interview with Apple's CEO will be available online at ABCNews.com immediately after 'World News Tonight.'