Apple helped UK investigate terrorist attacks, says Tim Cook

‘We have been cooperating with UK govt on some attacks besides law enforcement matters’, he added

Company News : Apple Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook said the company has helped UK officials investigate terror attacks, while reiterating his dismay over US plans to quit the Paris agreement on climate change.

“We have been cooperating with the UK government not only in law enforcement kind of matters but on some of the attacks,” Cook said during a Bloomberg Television interview on Monday. “I cannot speak on detail on that. But in cases when we have information and they have gone through the lawful process we don’t just give it but we do it very promptly.”

A third attack in the UK in less than three months has put more pressure on technology companies to prevent their products and services from being used by violent extremists. Tim Cook didn’t specify which attacks led to the company’s cooperation. Apple’s high privacy standards and tough encryption have been criticised by law enforcement officials and the company clashed last year in court with the FBI over the issue.

Cook said on Monday that Apple’s encryption is misunderstood. “It doesn’t mean no information. Metadata exists and that’s very important for building a profile,” he added. “The reality is that cyberattacks on people and governments, these affect your safety and security.” Cook also said he didn’t join any of US President Donald Trump’s business advisory councils because he thinks those groups aren’t “terribly productive.” “It wasn’t about not wanting to advise on something that we thought should be heard,” he added. Cook said he will continue to advise the president on matters that are important to him and the US, such as the Paris climate accord. Trump decided last week to pull the US out of the pact.

“He didn’t decide what I wanted him to decide,” Cook said of the president. “He decided wrong. It’s not in the best interest of the United States what he decided.” Cook spoke after Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference in San Jose, California, where the company unveiled a new internet-connected speaker called HomePod and updated its Siri digital assistant to wed users more tightly to its growing slate of products and services. (more)

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