Apple and Google are set to face pressure accessing the New York market with their smartphones if a newly proposed anti-encryption law is passed. A New York politician, Mathew Titone, has submitted a draft of laws to the Committee on Consumer Affairs and Protection of the New York Senate.
The law seeks to make it mandatory for smartphone manufacturers to make sure that they can actually crack into the devices that they sell and provide authorities with data whenever a need arises.
According to the draft law, smartphone makers and vendors who fail to comply shall be slapped with heavy fines for every single device that they sell in New York. The law is set to be subjected to a vote in the Senate later, with New Yorkers asked to express their opinion through a public vote. It is widely expected that the draft law shall be passed.
Should this happen, Apple and Google are likely to face a lot of pressure. On one hand, there has been growing political pressure for smartphone manufacturers to ensure that they are able to provide authorities with all the data that is stored in their devices.
According to Techdirt, many governments across the world are seeking powers to access data that is usually decrypted and stored in the millions of smartphones that are used across the world.
For example, in the UK, the government has been embroiled in a tussle with tech companies in general as a result of its attempt to legalise what has been dubbed ‘Snooper’s charter’ laws. The government seeks to use the laws to force ISPs to give it all the information that it may require at any time.
In the US, Techdirt reports that the FBI and other investigative agencies have been accusing Apple and Google of making it impossible for them to access data that may be crucial for law-enforcement activities.
Google and Apple have responded by saying that they are not able to access the data that is stored in their smartphones and that they are not willing to crack into their own devices as a way of satisfying the whims of the government.
In the same measure, tech companies have united in lobbying the UK government to avoid forcing them to crack their own devices. They argue that this will go against the security measures that they have worked hard to implement for the sake of the privacy of consumers.