Mr. Robot

For those who don’t follow actual news, a controversy has bubbled up recently in which the FBI has asked Apple to unlock an iPhone belonging to the San Bernardino shooter. The FBI believes that the phone could contain useful evidence, but Apple is fighting back, arguing that decrypting one person’s device could eventually put everyone’s smartphone in danger of being accessed by both hackers and overzealous government agencies. Apple’s Tim Cook wrote a letter to the company’s customers to explain this position, but it hasn’t stopped the FBI from pushing its airtight “c’mon, we promise we’ll only do it once” argument.

Now, Deadline is reporting that USA’s hit hacker drama Mr. Robot will be weighing in on this debate next season, but with more secret societies and Fight Club references involved. Showrunner Sam Esmail says that they already had a plan for season two to get into the ideas of encryption and privacy, but “then this whole thing with Apple and Tim Cook happened” so it seemed important for the show to actually tackle whether or not we really have a right to this kind of privacy. He says that the show’s own FBI consultants believe that “encryption should allow for this sort of third party side door thing,” so law enforcement officials can get into someone’s private data, but Esmail himself is “totally opposed to that.” However, Esmail says his goal is to “[get] people interested and invested in wanting to learn more about” this debate by showing both sides of it and “breaking [it] down in a credible way.”

Season two of Mr. Robot will premiere on USA later this year.

Advertisement