See also: Live blog: Apple’s iPhone SE event
"For many of us, the iPhone is an extension of ourself," Cook said.
"We need to decide as a nation how much power the government should have over our data and our privacy."
In case you’re not caught up, Apple and the the U.S. Department of Justice are currently arguing over whether or not the FBI can compel Apple to create a new version of iOS to circumvent the encryption on the iPhone belonging to a gunman that killed 14 people in San Bernardino in December.
The FBI wants Apple to create the software so it can guess the shooter’s password without being locked out and notes it would be a one-time deal. Apple is refusing to do so as it claims such software could jeopardize the protections of other people’s iPhones. The All Writs Act of 1789 that the government wants a judge to tap to force Apple’s hand serves essentially as a last resort for judges to compel an action so long as it’s legal and necessary.
The case goes before a judge on Tuesday in the Central District of California. The two sides have fought back and forth in court filings and in the ever-important battle of public relations.
Apple has consistently argued in the press and in its legal filings that what is at stake is more than just this one iPhone, and that doing what the government is asking it to do would decrease security for all of its users.
Cook reiterated that message on Monday, saying: "We did not expect to be in this position, at odds with our own government." He also added that he believed it was Apple’s responsibility to protect its customer’s privacy.
"We will not shrink from our responsibility," Cook said.