In the wake of a mass killing in San Bernardino, California, in December 2015, the FBI requested that Apple unlock an iPhone used by one of the shooters. Thus began a dilemma for both Apple and the FBI, each of them with storied histories that intertwined data and individual rights to privacy.
Apple faced a fundamental question made more difficult by the competing interests of a publicly-traded company: what is the best action for society and the public good? What precedent would Apple be setting if it complied with the FBI’s request? If the company refused to comply, would it be standing in the way of preventing further attacks?