The FBI needs help unlocking another terrorist’s iPhone

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iPhone 7 Home button
iPhone's security has the FBI stumped.
Photo: Ste Smith

The FBI and Apple could be on a collision course for another legal showdown over a dead terrorist’s locked iPhone.

Apple refused to comply with the FBI’s demands to unlock the San Bernardino shooter’s iPhone eight months ago. That led to a very public legal battle over privacy and security. Now the FBI needs help again after obtaining the iPhone of a terrorist that stabbed 10 people in a Minnesota mall.

FBI paid a ton of money to unlock San Bernardino iPhone

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The next iPhone will have a huge battery.
The next iPhone will have a huge battery.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

Getting into the San Bernardino shooter’s iPhone 5c was no cheap feat for the FBI.

The Department of Justice withdrew its demands that Apple unlock the terrorist’s iPhone after the FBI was approached by a third-party that had a method to hack the device. It turns out Cellebrite charged the FBI through the nose to access the information it wanted, but FBI director James Comey says it was totally worth it.

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.

Apple engineers admit iPhone will never be ‘unbreakable’

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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

Getting to a point where absolutely no one can hack into your iPhone will be practically impossible, according to Apple engineers who admit no company writes perfect code.

Apple has been criticized by national security officials for making it harder for law enforcement to access much needed information on locked iPhones to solve cases. Now that the FBI has figured out a way to hack the San Bernardino shooter’s iPhone the debate has cooled down, but Apple engineers say they want the FBI to divulge their method, for the sake of security.

FBI cracks San Bernardino iPhone without Apple’s help

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That iPhone in your pocket is much more well-traveled than you are.
The FBI didn't need Apple's help after all.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

The Department of Justice has removed all legal action against Apple after the FBI successfully hacked the San Bernardino terrorist’s iPhone without assistance from Cupertino.

Apple and the FBI have been fighting a very public legal battle over whether the government can force the iPhone-maker to create a backdoor into iOS. Apple CEO Tim Cook publicly defied a federal court order to deliberately weaken iOS security for millions of users, but it appears that the feds are backing down — at least for now.

DOJ surprises Apple with evidentiary hearing request

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Bruce Sewell
The DoJ has thrown another curveball at Apple's lawyers.
Photo: House Judiciary Committee

The Department of Justice has pulled another surprise on Apple this week by making a last minute request to turn the company’s court appearance on March 22nd with the FBI into an evidentiary hearing.

Apple lawyers told reporters this morning that they were caught-off guard by the last minute request which should have been submitted weeks ago.

Apple accuses FBI of using All Writs Act like ‘magic wand’

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Bruce Sewell
Apple's legal team has lobbed its latest response at FBI.
Photo: House Committee on the Judiciary Hearings

Apple general counsel Bruce Sewell said the FBI threw “all decorum to the winds” in its latest federal court filing, but in the company’s official response today it has vowed it does not “intend to response in kind.”

The iPhone-maker says in its latest filing that the FBI’s claim that it exhausted all viable investigative alternatives is false because it improperly reset the iCloud password before consulting Apple. The company also admits that it didn’t take a public stance on privacy and encryption until the release of iOS 8.

Counterterrorism expert says FBI isn’t being honest about iPhone hacking

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Your iPhone will always need to be recharged everyday.
The FBI isn't really trying to unlock the San Bernardino terrorist's iPhone.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

The guy that warned George Bush about an imminent al-Qaida attack before 9/11 is taking Apple’s side in the company’s fight against the FBI over whether it can be compelled to break into the San Bernardino terrorist’s iPhone.

Richard Clarke, who served as the senior counterterrorism official in the US for nine years, sat down for an interview this morning regarding encryption and the FBI’s efforts to hack the iPhone. Despite FBI Director James Comey’s insistence that the FBI has tried everything, Clarke says all it would take to hack the device is a call to Fort Meade.