Join us at TNW Conference 2022 for insights into the future of tech →

The heart of tech

This article was published on March 14, 2016

    John Oliver explains why encryption is so important to everyone

    Owen Williams
    Story by

    Owen Williams

    Former TNW employee

    Owen was a reporter for TNW based in Amsterdam, now a full-time freelance writer and consultant helping technology companies make their word Owen was a reporter for TNW based in Amsterdam, now a full-time freelance writer and consultant helping technology companies make their words friendlier. In his spare time he codes, writes newsletters and cycles around the city.

    As Apple continues to publicly battle the FBI, which wants the company to unlock an iPhone used by the terrorist at the center of the San Bernardino shooting, John Oliver has finally taken on why encryption is important.

    Oliver explained why everyone should care about encryption and while he acknowledged that it’s a hard debate, he believes that “the risks of weakening encryption even a little bit are potentially much worse.”

    He says he’s on Apple’s side of the debate, but “I do think it would help their customers understand it better if they were a little more honest about security in their ads.”

    At the end of the segment the show featured a fake “honest” Apple advertisement that made a great case for why iPhones need to stay encrypted – even when the government demands access.

    Oliver’s arguments are some of the best available for explaining to friends why the debate matters, and how the company losing to the FBI could open everyone up to hackers in the future.