FBI found no new information on San Bernardino shooter’s iPhone

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After all that effort, the San Bernardino iPhone turns out not to be what the FBI was hoping for.
Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

The FBI has had three weeks to examine the unlocked iPhone belonging to San Bernardino shooter Syed Farook, and U.S. law enforcement officials are finally ready to say whether they were able to find anything of use on the handset.

The answer? Not much. Although that’s not the way they’re presenting it.

Apple denies giving China its source code

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Bruce Sewell
Apple's top lawyer went back to Congress today.
Photo: House Committee on the Judiciary Hearings

Chinese authorities have demanded Apple give the country complete access to its source code within the last two years, but Apple says it has refused to comply with the government’s demands.

Apple’s top lawyer, Bruce Sewell, defended the company’s position before U.S. lawmakers at a congressional hearing today, after the iPhone-maker was accused by law enforcement officials of refusing to help the U.S. government while at the same time freely giving information to China for business reasons.

Apple claims FBI hasn’t exhausted all options to hack Brooklyn iPhone

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iPhone SE 14
Apple's hacking battle with FBI rages on.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

Apple is pushing back against the federal government’s demands to unlock another iPhone, this time related to a drug case in Brooklyn.

In a new filing posted on Friday, the iPhone-maker has asked a New York judge to dismiss the federal government’s appeal against Apple, claiming the DoJ has not proved that it has exhausted all resources to unlock the iPhone in question.

Tim Cook is still America’s biggest LGBT power player

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Life at Apple is great for Tim Cook.
Life at Apple is great for Tim Cook.
Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

Apple CEO Tim Cook didn’t come out publicly until 2014, but he’s quickly become one of the most powerful leaders of the LGBT community.

Out Magazine ranked Tim Cook as the most influential LGBT person of 2016 in its 10th annual power list that charts everything from a person’s impact on the economy, political clout, and how they change our world view.

Feds can’t tell Apple how they cracked San Bernardino iPhone

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iPhone 6s
The FBI may not legally own the process used to crack the iPhone 5c under investigation.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

We’ve heard plenty of bluster about how the FBI won’t tell Apple how it cracked the iPhone 5c at the heart of the San Bernardino shooting case, but there’s another possibility, too: that the Feds can’t tell Apple how it did it.

Why? Because according to a new report, citing Obama administration sources, it may not actually have legal ownership of the method in question.

The feds still want Apple to help it hack an iPhone in New York

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iPhone will never be 100 percent hacker-proof.
iPhone will never be 100 percent hacker-proof.
Photo: Sam Mills/Cult of Mac

The FBI dropped its case against Apple to hack the San Bernardino shooter’s iPhone, but the Department of Justice filed a new letter today demanding Apple help it unlock a different iPhone.

The iPhone in question belonged to meth deal Jun Feng in New York. Federal authorities believe the device may contain critical evidence and plan to appeal a ruling made by a magistrate judge in Brooklyn who decided the government can’t force Apple to hack its own device.

In its letter of appeal, the DoJ argues that because Apple helped prosecutors unlock at least 70 iPhones in the past, the company should do it again.

Apple had a different stance on helping the FBI in 2008

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Suppliers can't wait for iPhone 7.
Apple's not always been opposed to helping the government.
Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

Here in 2016, Apple may be at odds with the FBI on the subject of iPhone unlocking — but things weren’t always that way!

According to a new report, when the FBI first asked Apple to help it unlock an iPhone, way back in 2008, Apple didn’t just comply with the order; it actually helped prosecutors to draft the court order.

FBI reveals unlocking tool doesn’t work on iPhone 5s and higher

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iPhone will never be 100 percent hacker-proof.
iPhone will never be 100 percent hacker-proof.
Photo: Sam Mills/Cult of Mac

The iPhone unlocking tool used by the FBI to unlock the San Bernardino terrorist’s iPhone 5c can only be used on “a narrow slice of phones” the agency admitted.

FBI director James Comey revealed that litigation between Apple and the federal government has ended, but the tool the agency purchased to unlock the device does not work on the iPhone 5s or newer iPhones, including the iPhone SE.

White House won’t back bill forcing tech companies to break encryption

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Having not one but two U.S. presidents in your fan base is pretty good going. Sadly, President Barack Obama is not allowed an iPhone as part of his official wardrobe and is stuck on BlackBerry. That hasn’t stopped him from openly lusting after the iPhone 6 in recent pics, though. He’s also admitted to spending hours each day on his iPad.Photo:
President Barack Obama is playing it cool when it comes to encryption.
Photo: Pete Souza/Wikipedia CC

The White House is refusing to publicly support new draft legislation that would give judges the right to force tech companies like Apple to help law enforcement break encrypted data.

The measure was put forward by Sens. Richard Burr and Dianne Feinstein, respectively the Republican chair and top Democrat of the Senate Intelligence Committee. Both Burr and Feinstein have been contacted by the FBI regarding a briefing on how the bureau was able to circumvent iPhone encryption on an older Apple device.