Apple introduced a range of privacy-oriented features that will help users store their data in iCloud more securely. Privacy advocates and human rights groups lauded the move, but law enforcement agencies expressed concerns.
Apparently, they’re not against improved privacy, but instead fear criminals of all walks of life might abuse the privilege.
In an email statement sent to the Washington Times, the FBI said Apple’s end-to-end encryption (opens new tab) “hinders our ability to protect the American people from criminal acts ranging from cyber-attacks and violence against children to drug trafficking, organized crime, and terrorism.”
“In this age where cybersecurity is a major concern, law enforcement partners and the FBI need to have ‘lawful accessibility by design.
Sasha O’Connell, an ex-FBI official, spoke to the press at the same time. New York TimesHowever, there are some caveats to remember. “It’s great that companies prioritize security, but there are trade-offs. One that is often overlooked is the impact it has upon decreasing law enforcement access and digital evidence.
Apple has introduced a number of new security-focused features recently, including iMessage Contact Key Verification, Advanced Data Protection for iCloud, and Security Keys for Apple ID, and it’s the Advanced Data Protection for iCloud that really struck a nerve with the FBI. The new feature ensures that all data stored in iCloud will be encrypted at the end, so only trusted devices can decrypt and/or read it.
In other words, not Apple, nor anyone else, will be able to access Apple’s servers and view whatever data users have stored in iCloud.
This isn’t the first time that the FBI has had an encounter with Apple. Six years ago, the FBI took an iPhone belonging to Syed Farook. He was one of the terrorist attackers at the Inland Regional Center San Bernardino, California. The two killed 14 people and injures 22 more on December 2, 2015.
The iPhone was locked and a major fight broke out between the FBI (who claimed it had no desire to unlock the iPhone) and Apple (who claimed it had no means or desire to unlock it). The dispute reached the US Congress with nearly all the tech companies supporting Apple. The FBI managed to unlock the device using the help of a third-party. Later, the media reported that Cellebrite, an Israeli mobile forensics company was the third party.
Via: MacRumors (opens new tab)