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REACT task force that targeted blogger addresses its connections to Apple

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The task force that raided a blogger’s home Friday night after reports that he had come into possession of an iPhone prototype left open the possibility that Apple Inc. was an informal member of its steering committee, which the task force consults for ‘advice, recommendations and strategic input.’

The Rapid Enforcement Allied Computer Team task force (REACT), a multi-agency law enforcement body, seized dozens of items including computers and hard drives from Gizmodo blogger Jason Chen’s home Friday night under a wide-ranging warrant. Chen had written extensively about an apparent iPhone prototype found in a local bar.

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In response to that raid, Nick Muyo, the public information officer of the Santa Clara County district attorney’s office, answered questions about whether Apple was a member of a steering committee the task force was required to create as a condition of its funding.

‘To the extent that high-tech companies or other entities would send representatives to the meetings, they are considered members of the committee,’ Muyo said in a statement. ‘While our records have not shown its attendance as of late, Apple is similarly situated as other companies or entities, which have open invitations to attend committee meetings at any frequency.’

REACT works on high-tech computer crimes. It says on its website that it ‘depends on our industry partners.’

The task force says those partners provide ‘specialized training, liaison personnel and internal support.’

Apple did not immediately respond to a comment about its participation in REACT meetings. -- David Sarno


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