Manhattan DA: Apple Needs to Protect Victims of Crime

Cyrus Vance, Jr., the Manhattan District Attorney, says he wants more access to Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) iPhones. He met one-on-one with the FOX Business Network’s Maria Bartiromo to discuss Apple’s device default encryption, first implemented with iOS 8, which ensures that a third-party has no way to access your information.

The conversation was particularly important to Vance Jr. as the office of the DA in Manhattan has several phones it needs access to in order to close out cases involving drug peddlers.

“Since October 2014, when Apple re-engineered its phones so they could not be open with a court order judicial warrant, we now have 205 cases just in our cyber lab alone, [that] do not take into account the NYPD’s, for which we’ve gotten search warrants from a judge but we cannot access because of this device default encryption that Apple has installed,” Vance Jr. explained.

The Manhattan DA believes the U.S. Senate and Congress need to exercise their responsibility to find the middle ground between public safety and privacy.

“Apple speaks on behalf of its customers. I want Apple to speak on behalf of the customers who are victims of crimes who may not have a path toward justice because we cannot access to the information necessary to do our job,” said Vance Jr.

A recent Wall Street Journal/NBC poll shows Americans are divided on the debate between privacy and national security.

NSA Privacy Apple FBN Graphic

“We can’t just look at this through the national security lens. We have to look at this through a national lens of which national security is just one problem," Vance Jr. concluded.