Post-Snowden, iPhone 6 encryption fans safety debate

iPhone 6

Encryption technology in the iPhone 6 has taken root in a scales-of-justice debate between privacy supporters and public safety officials. Apple is using a more advanced encryption technology.

A person's e-mails, contacts, images, bank account numbers, and other sensitive information have a level of protection in the iPhone 6 that would make it difficult for government agencies to access the information. As one side of the argument goes, that is all quite good for the worker who can go about his business with the confidence that nobody will see his communications, but who may suffer a change of heart if his child were to be abducted and officials told him they recovered a phone but could not decode it. An encrypted personal messaging device is an attractive thought but, viewed in opposing arguments, may also be a haven for terrorists and criminals. A key voice on the public side has been FBI Director James Comey. "I am a huge believer in the rule of law," he said, "but I also believe that no one in this country is beyond the law," in addressing reporters last week. "What concerns me about this is companies marketing something expressly to allow people to place themselves beyond the law."

A report by David Sanger and Brian Chen in The New York Times that talks about how law enforcement agencies feel about the iPhone 6 security and what the technology entails indicates arguments that are not easy to dismiss no matter which side one takes over privacy rights and public safety. A key concern among law enforcement officials is that, said The New York Times, "the smartphone is the first of a post-Snowden generation of equipment that will disrupt their investigative abilities." The Washington Post similarly said last week that "The rising use of encryption is already taking a toll on the ability of law enforcement officials to collect evidence from smartphones. Apple in particular has been introducing tough new security measures for more than two years that have made it difficult for police armed with cracking software to break in. The new encryption is significantly tougher, experts say."

Apple said that on devices running iOS 8, personal information such as photos, messages (including attachments), mail, contacts, call history and reminders is placed under the protection of your passcode. The phone encrypts mail, photos and contacts based on a complex mathematical algorithm that uses a code created by, and unique to, the phone's user, reported Sanger and Chen.

"Apple has never worked with any government agency from any country to create a 'back door' in any of our products or services. We have also never allowed any government access to our servers. And we never will," said the company's privacy statement. "Unlike our competitors, Apple cannot bypass your passcode and therefore cannot access this data. So it's not technically feasible for us to respond to government warrants for the extraction of this data from devices in their possession running iOS 8."

An iOS forensics expert, Jonathan Zdziarski, praised Apple for adopting its privacy posture, saying it meant improved security by marrying encryption to the PIN. At the same time, he said, law enforcement would not find it impossible to go after information they wanted.

"Apple has done a great job of breaking a number of law enforcement forensics tools and features with the release of iOS 8. Some existing features are still likely to work, however." As important, Zdziarski attempted to examine both sides of the coin, from privacy to forensics. Consider, he said, that by improving the security of their products, Apple has improved it for everyone, including judges, the military and many others. "If you're going to weaken security to make forensics possible, you're also weakening it for everyone, opening the door for foreign governments and cyber criminals to attack all of us. For the sake of privacy and overall security, the only logical solution is to make products as secure as possible, and let good detective work do the crime solving, rather than an easy button."

No doubt this is not the last we will hear on this debate. Google has said it too is planning to enable an encryption system by default on the next version of Android.


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Sep 28, 2014
The only thing that has happened is that apple said it cant get into them, and they wont try, they didnt make a back door. But the goverment has alot of taxpayer money to work with, they will figure it out and they will have a false sense of security.

Sep 28, 2014
FBI Director James Comey: "I am a huge believer in the rule of law," he said, "but I also believe that no one in this country is beyond the law," in addressing reporters last week. "What concerns me about this is companies marketing something expressly to allow people to place themselves beyond the law."
----------------------------------------------------

Comey, who served during the Bush Debacles, assumes our Constitutional protections against government intrusion are "breaking the law".

It terrifies me to have him in charge of our liberties.

Sep 28, 2014
The rising use of encryption is already taking a toll on the ability of law enforcement officials to collect evidence from smartphones.

The NSA (and their ilk in other countries) and law enforcement bodies that collude with them by making use of intercepted communications from the public-a-large have nobody but themselves to blame for this: if these organisations weren't indulging in broad-scale communication tapping of the public-at-large there would not have been the backlash against these methods that has been seen nor any major market demand for privacy by advanced encryption in mobile devices.

Sep 28, 2014
911 was open declaration of war on US citizens but the subjugated are in a coma. Apple is not a security company they are in Rothschild's pocket so the best of their intentions are unfortunately insufficient. Maybe better to follow Rockefeller development tract as they have more interest in profiting in energy sector than leeching off poor and middle class

Sep 28, 2014
Can you imagine a government that outlaws citizens owning a floor safe because the lock is too secure to be breached?

Sep 29, 2014
Well, Colinclunas, actually it's not unhackable. Aside from the obvious point that nothing is ever truly unhackable, Blackberry has already BEEN hacked!
http://www.comput...re-.html

http://arstechnic...sort-of/

Sep 29, 2014
What goo is encryption when the hardware is already compromised? Apple could go on claiming that they never worked with government officials all they want - but it would still mean nothing.

We need open source software AND hardware to get private messages to stay private. There is a limit to where the government should be allowed to snoop. And last I checked you do have the right to remain silent and there is no law that can force you to incriminate yourself. Handing over passwords is just such an act, since it opens up (potentially) incriminating evidence.

Sep 29, 2014
FBI Director James Comey: "I am a huge believer in the rule of law," he said, "but I also believe that no one in this country is beyond the law," in addressing reporters last week. "What concerns me about this is companies marketing something expressly to allow people to place themselves beyond

Comey, who served during the Bush Debacles, assumes our Constitutional protections against government intrusion are "breaking the law".

It terrifies me to have him in charge of our liberties.


"June 2013 it was made official, that that President Barack Obama would nominate Comey to be the next Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation"

"I think it's important to recognize that you can't have 100 per cent security and also then have 100 per cent privacy and zero inconvenience" - B. Obama

As I already told you, the Obama administration Expanded the NSA program, thus your mention of Bush is disingenuous. Liberals think the constitution is a "evolving document",

Sep 29, 2014
,... so why even mention Bush and not likewise Obama? Liberals are either clueless or have no coherent political philosophy,... on the one hand they're all about liberty, admirably,... but yet immediately toss all that aside in advocating government solutions and social engineering. Do you not undertand that big gov can only solve social problems at the Cost of Liberty? Why does not you desire for liberty of provacy not extend to liberty of economics? Why would you disparage free market capitalism and advocate central planning? Answer, you're a confusd liberal.


Sep 29, 2014
[Edit....Why does your desire for liberty of privacy not extend to liberty of economics?]

Sep 29, 2014
"What concerns me about this is companies marketing something expressly to allow people to place themselves beyond the law."


Soooo, you pretty much just said that privacy is illegal. I guess you will start wanting all verbal communication to not be "beyond the law" either. What about websites from overseas, I guess they are "beyond the law" so we better filter them out. For our safety, we need to have an army of drones flying around looking for criminal activity and capturing people who commit crimes.

Its easy to control people. Think about it from the perspective of our leaders. They can do whatever they want, they just might have to lie to the people to get them to think what they want. Lets say, you wanted to capture oil reserves in the middle east. What you do is fake a terrorist attack, blame the people in the middle east, and suddenly everyone is cool with you invading another country. Its easy!

There are many disturbing aspects to this article:


Sep 29, 2014
The day that I have a right to know EVERYTHING the government is doing, is the day I wouldn't mind letting them know EVERYTHING I am doing. Until then, they can suck it!

Sep 29, 2014
Gov't is terrified of encryption. The first real big scare, that I remember at least, was PGP.

Many people don't know this, but there are export restrictions on encryption capable devices. For example, your WiFi router might be illegal to take out of the United States or at least to certain countries. I guess this issue hasn't really come to light yet. People travel all over the world with their smart phones. Some of them certainly have export restricted algorithms or hardware. But, no nation or government body is exerting any control over travelling with phones.... yet, at least.

Sep 29, 2014
[Edit....Why does your desire for liberty of privacy not extend to liberty of economics?]


Because economics is in the public sphere, where, if you intend for free market capitalism to function like it's supposed to, you need well-informed consumers who know what they're buying into. Secrecy in economics produces market failures.


Sep 29, 2014
[Edit....Why does your desire for liberty of privacy not extend to liberty of economics?]


Because economics is in the public sphere, where, if you intend for free market capitalism to function like it's supposed to, you need well-informed consumers who know what they're buying into. Secrecy in economics produces market failures.


That's not what I meant,... It was a comment carried over from another thread with gkam.

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