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Obama woos tech community amid Apple battle

Saturday, March 12, 2016 - 11:00

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President Barack Obama on Friday addressed SXSW - the technology world's Davos and Woodstock rolled into one - making a recruitment pitch to America's whizkids, even as the government is embroiled in a high-profile battle with Apple.

[AUSTIN] President Barack Obama on Friday addressed SXSW - the technology world's Davos and Woodstock rolled into one - making a recruitment pitch to America's whizkids, even as the government is embroiled in a high-profile battle with Apple.

Mr Obama traveled to Austin, Texas, to urge programers and other tech entrepeneurs to enlist and help make government services better.

"We need you," said Obama.

But an otherwise warm welcome from the young and liberal crowd of 2,100 was marked by skepticism about his government's clashes with tech firms over security.

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Mr Obama's administration has gone to court to try and force Apple to unlock the iPhone of one of the San Bernardino terror attackers.

But that has prompted a wider debate within both the government and the tech community over privacy and whether government should have back door access to encrypted content.

Mr Obama told the crowd it was not new to accept some curbs on privacy in exchange for personal security.

AFP

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