I guess I have been watching too many episodes of Homeland, 24 and Criminal Minds because this latest news item blows my mind and makes me wonder why the FBI does not have adequate capability to penetrate encrypted dialogue on the iPhone?
Maybe the FBI should take a page from the Apple Manual and apply the “Think Different” philosophy to their detective skills.
Nevertheless , they are forcing Apple to create software to bypass specific encryption protocols developed and safeguarded by Apple Inc. Apple CEO, Tim Cook, stresses that their customers deserve privacy, defying orders to unlock the phone in question. He said it would be a dangerous and unprecedented move on their part.
To emphasize the seriousness of this matter and the value Apple places on securing privacy for all of their customers, Apple posted a well – detailed MESSAGE to its customers, explaining and underlying the importance of this issue and what it means to the security of all data stored on its servers.
Here is an excerpt:
“The Need for Encryption
Smartphones, led by iPhone, have become an essential part of our lives. People use them to store an incredible amount of personal information, from our private conversations to our photos, our music, our notes, our calendars and contacts, our financial information and health data, even where we have been and where we are going.
All that information needs to be protected from hackers and criminals who want to access it, steal it, and use it without our knowledge or permission. Customers expect Apple and other technology companies to do everything in our power to protect their personal information, and at Apple we are deeply committed to safeguarding their data.
Compromising the security of our personal information can ultimately put our personal safety at risk. That is why encryption has become so important to all of us.
For many years, we have used encryption to protect our customers’ personal data because we believe it’s the only way to keep their information safe. We have even put that data out of our own reach, because we believe the contents of your iPhone are none of our business.”
I, along with the rest of the world, appreciate the seriousness of this matter and the need to recover as much information and dialogue engaged by this individual prior to the shooting – but, not at the expense of Apple customer security. All it takes is one – ONE – disgruntled FBI employee to run amok with this software and bring down the secure digital framework we associate with Apple.
I don’t have answers to this problem but, surely, in this day and age of advanced technology, there must be a solution somewhere, somehow. Maybe the FBI can follow up on their leads the old – fashioned way – through better Intel, perhaps? To base all your leads on a phone is just sad. No doubt it requires less effort.
However, think about this. When people used landlines and the calls were secure, what did our intelligence do then? Pound the old pavement, questioning tons of people, adding 2+2 =4, summoning one’s instinct and moving on that instinct.
Maybe my thinking is archaic and simplistic, but, sometimes, everything old can become new again.
In the meantime, Apple customers can sleep easier tonight knowing that Apple has gone to extreme measures to ensure the protection and privacy of their personal information.