Apple CEO to speak at White House cyber summit

Apple CEO Tim Cook will speak at the White House cybersecurity summit Friday at Stanford University, according to an event invitation.

The White House is expected to reveal its next executive action on cybersecurity at the summit, which will bring together tech executives, leading academics and government officials to discuss ways in which the government can better collaborate with the private sector on cybersecurity initiatives.

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Cook’s remarks will come amid a debate between tech companies and law enforcement officials over encryption.

Apple has feuded directly with Department of Justice officials in recent months over the tech giant’s encryption measures. The company claims its newest operating system locks everyone out from accessing data stored on its devices, including law enforcement officials and Apple itself.

Law enforcement argues this impedes legitimate investigations, and the second-ranking DOJ official has reportedly told Apple executives that children would die as result of investigators’ inability to access the company’s devices.

The DOJ has taken its argument to court, invoking an 18th-century federal law to try and compel Apple to help decrypt their devices.

Many major tech players like Google have taken similar steps with their encryption and a slew of encrypted texting and calling apps have popped up over the last year.

FBI Assistant Director Joe Demarest Jr. will also speak at Friday’s cyber summit.

Bureau Director James Comey has been outspoken in his opposition to what he calls “the going dark problem.” He’s called on Congress to pass laws mandating that companies give government access to data on their devices, often referred to as a “backdoor.”

President Obama recently expressed some support for this concept, commenting during a January press conference that law enforcement should have a way to monitor communications over social media and  on the Internet.

Secret Service Deputy Director A.T. Smith is slated to give remarks Friday, according to the invitation. The Secret Service plays a major role in the government's cyber crime investigations.