I have worked in the tech industry for more than two decades and data protection has always been a top priority for me and everyone I’ve worked with. I’ve run multiple B2B and direct-to-consumer businesses, and I can tell you that the government is in no position to ask any company to weaken its security.
In fact, it would be great to see what the government is doing to help companies instead of asking tech companies to create “back doors.”
Cybersecurity continues to be a hot topic and is at a critical point in history. Even if you do not own a computer or smartphone (but of course you do or you would not be reading this), your information has most likely already been hacked. There have already been hundreds of millions of records that have been stolen over the past few years — and these are the ones that we know about.
The list of company security breaches is long and ever-growing: Target, The Home Depot, eBay, Sony, J.P. Morgan, Chase, Slack, CareFirst and Premera BlueCross BlueShield, Experian/T-Mobile, and Anthem, even the government’s OPM security hack. A company that you work with has most likely been hacked and your personal information already stolen.
We are now at a time when we should be working together to create the most secure systems technically possible — not working to create “back doors.”
My experience running a web-hosting company, Media Temple, and now icitizen, a civic engagement platform, makes the situation with Apple and the FBI really hit home. The trust of our users and the security of their data is critical to our mission.
That said, it’s great to see see not only Tim Cook and Apple take a stand on this, but also other tech execs like Google’s CEO Sundar Pichai publicly support Tim’s decisions.
As tech companies, let’s stick together and focus our efforts on making our solutions totally impenetrable. Anything else will be hackable.