Maricopa County Attorney's Office to stop distributing iPhones to its employees

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Maricopa County Bill Montgomery is taking a stand, announcing that his office will stop giving iPhones to employees.
 
Montgomery blames Apple's refusal to unlock an iPhone that was used by one of the San Bernardino Shooters.
 
He is phasing out the iPhone, calling the refusal to unlock the phone.
 
"If Apple wants to become the official smartphone provider to ISIS and the Sinaloa Cartel, they can do so, but there's going to be a consequence, and the consequence is that this office will no longer issue iPhones," said Bill Montgomery.
 
It's a bold statement from Maricopa County's top prosecutor. He's the first Arizona official to part ways with the tech giant. It comes on the heels of Apple's refusal to create a "key" of sorts which would allow the FBI to unlock an iPhone used by the San Bernardino shooter Syed Farook.
 
"Apple as an American corporation, I believe has a responsibility to be a good corporate citizen," said Montgomery.
 
Apple's CEO says unlocking the phone would set a dangerous precedent, and could eventually make all iPhones easier to hack and harder to protect. Montgomery says he is pushing for common ground, suggesting Apple could create an encryption system that would protect customers and law enforcement interests.
 
"We can solve this, so it's no excuse for Apple to say they can't possibly protect consumer privacy interests if they create an encryption key, that's the challenge," he said.
 
Montgomery says this isn't just a philosophical debate.
 
"This office right now in several prosecutions that have been hampered by the inability to download information from smart phones due to the encryption and password protections," said Montgomery.
 
He says this isn't a crusade, and he won't be trying to convince other agencies to follow suit.

Apple says it should be up to Congress, not the courts, whether they must unlock the encrypted iPhone.

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