Last week, the U.S. government revealed that Apple refused a request by the FBI to unlock the iPhone carried by one of the San Bernardino shooters. Following this revelation, Apple CEO Tim Cook said that requiring the company to create a bypass to the phone would set a dangerous precedent and would undermine the security of all such mobile devices.
During my time working for the Army, I lived a "double life" under the military's don't ask, don't tell ban as a closeted trans woman in a relationship with a man. Living under the ban, I regularly used encryption to shield my personal information on my laptop and mobile devices from colleagues living in close quarters. However, things could have been even more high stakes for me. If I were a closeted trans woman, while living and working in less open countries—such as Russia, Uganda, and Nigeria—I could face imprisonment, torture, and even death, if exposed. This is why queer and trans people living in such countries now use encrypted devices, such as Apple's iPhone 5C, to build and maintain its communities while avoiding the dangerous scrutiny of others.
Now, as the U.S. government seeks a novel judicial bac door to one phone, all of our encrypted data on most of our mobile devices and personal computers could be compromised by adversaries of queer and trans people who seek to cause us harm. Read more via Advocate