French parliamentary deputies have voted in favor of legislation that would see execs from private companies jailed for refusal to hand over encrypted data to investigators, reports the Guardian. While no direct reference was made to the Apple/FBI battle, it is clear that this was behind the proposal.
The controversial amendment, drafted by the rightwing opposition, stipulates that a private company which refuses to hand over encrypted data to an investigating authority would face up to five years in jail and a €350,000 (£270,000) fine.
The vote took place in France’s lower parliament on an amendment to a penal reform bill. The government does not favor the amendment, and the bill itself has two more hurdles to pass before it would become law, with subsequent votes in both the National Assembly and Senate.
Numerous tech companies and others have weighed-in on Apple’s side in the past few days, filing amicus briefs with the court in support of Apple’s stance. While the issue continues to work its way through the courts, the recent Congressional hearing makes it look increasingly likely that the issue will eventually be decided by Congress.