Clearly a rubicon moment for privacy and end-to-end encryption.
I worry if Apple faces anything other than existential annihilation for proposing continual surveillance of private messages then it won't be long before other providers feel the pressure to do the same.
You can wrap that surveillance in any number of layers of cryptography to try and make it palatable, the end result is the same.
Everyone on that platform is treated as a potential criminal, subject to continual algorithmic surveillance without warrant or cause.
If Apple are successful in introducing this, how long do you think it will be before the same is expected of other providers? Before walled-garden prohibit apps that don't do it? Before it is enshrined in law?
How long do you think it will be before the database is expanded to include "terrorist" content"? "harmful-but-legal" content"? state-specific censorship?
I hate going all slippery-slope, but I look at the slope, and governments around the world are covering it in oil, and Apple just pushed it's customers over the edge.
Update: These initial expressions of hesitance from Whatsapp are at least a small sign that there is some fight left in corporate e2e providers to reject mandates of on-device mass surveillance. Some reasons for optimism there.
You can follow @SarahJamieLewis.
Tip: mention @threader on a Twitter thread with the keyword “compile” to get a link to it.