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UPDATE: Apple CEO says company will fight judge's ruling

This July 27, 2014, photo provided by U.S. Customs and Border Protection shows Tashfeen Malik, left, and Syed Farook, as they passed through O'Hare International Airport in Chicago. (U.S. Customs and Border Protection via AP)

Apple Inc. CEO Tim Cook says his company will resist a federal magistrate's order to hack its own users in connection with the investigation of the San Bernardino, California shootings.

In a statement posted early Wednesday on the company's website, Cook argued that such a move would undermine encryption by creating a backdoor that could potentially be used on other future devices.

Cook's letter was a direct and ferocious response to an order from U.S. Magistrate Judge Sheri Pym that Apple Inc. help the Obama administration break into an encrypted iPhone belonging to one of the shooters in the December attack.

The first-of-its-kind ruling was a significant victory for the Justice Department in a technology policy debate that pits digital privacy against national security interests.

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