FBI expert says Apple ‘jerks’ are ‘evil geniuses’

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Here's how Apple protects our iOS devices.
Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

Apple “jerks” have been labeled “evil geniuses” by an FBI forensics expert. Stephen Flatley slammed the iPhone-maker this week for making it even more difficult to hack into iOS devices.

Apple’s strict stance on privacy means that we can be confident our data is safe when we use an iPhone.

Strong encryption prevents law enforcement agencies from obtaining our messages, call logs, and other sensitive information, while Apple’s refusal to create a software backdoor means the likes of the FBI cannot crack into our devices without a passcode.

The FBI doesn’t like Apple security

The FBI doesn’t like this — as one might expect. Flatley told attendees at the International Conference on Cyber Security in Manhattan on Wednesday that it’s now even more difficult for the FBI to carry out investigative work due to Apple’s security implementations.

Flatley was particularly upset that Apple “jerks” recently increased the time between passcode guesses. Its decision to change hash iterations from 10,000 to 10,000,000 means it now takes longer than ever for brute force tools to find the correct passcode.

“Password attempts speed went from 45 passwords a second to one every 18 seconds,” Flatley complained. “Your crack time just went from two days to two months.”

“At what point is it just trying to one up things and at what point is it to thwart law enforcement?” Flatley asked. “Apple is pretty good at evil genius stuff.”

FBI fights encryption

Flatley’s comments came a day after FBI director Christopher Wray called encryption an “urgent public safety issue.” Wray, like his predecessor James Comey, is fighting against companies like Apple who use encryption to protect our most sensitive data.

Via: PatentlyApple

  • bIg hIlL

    Clap trap. The other name for Apple is Goverment Branch of Surveillance Equipment Distribution Ltd.

    • Nem Wan

      I’m not aware of any evidence that would support a reasonable belief that Apple and the government are conspiring to deceive the public into believing Apple devices are secure while in fact the government can access their data. The burden is on those who make such allegations to substantiate them.

      • bIg hIlL

        Those who have eyes can see. The truth will out.

      • CelestialTerrestrial

        If the FBI is saying how difficult it is to get access to their data, how is that they are conspiring?

      • Nem Wan

        My point exactly. But conspiracy theorists will always say reality is the opposite of anything corporations and the FBI want us to think, so their “reality” is Apple and the FBI are conspiring to persuade through reverse psychology privacy-conscious people to use secretly backdoored Apple.

      • CelestialTerrestrial

        Their reality without proof. oh, Ok. Sounds like delusional thinking. A hypothesis based on no facts to support the theory.

      • johnrogersharmspolice

        Its good to know that the Chinese military and Russia are wasting a lot of money/resources doing things to try to mitigate stuff they just need to buy an iPhone to mitigate… President Trump and everybody in that entire Russia witch hunt/scandal really should have just bought iPhones also. Or you know everybody could do something obviously really crazy and just get along with each other, behave lawfully and be reasonable people.

    • jbelkin

      so the FBI are liars?, you should like the orange dude

      • bIg hIlL

        You find them trustworthy?

  • Matt

    “Flatley was particularly upset that Apple “jerks” recently increased the time between passcode guesses. Its decision to change hash iterations from 10,000 to 10,000,000 means it now takes longer than ever for brute force tools to find the correct passcode.”

    I thought that if you type in the passcode wrongly more than 10 times, the data on the phone gets erased? That’s what I have switched on, is there a way around that??

    • Farley

      That applies only if you use the iOS interface to try to decrypt the data which is fundamentally flawed. Any government agency or real data analyst would never use the actually host OS to get at your data, for this would potentially change or corrupt (or remove) your data due to traps and pitfalls (such as this auto-deletion feature). A data analyst would try to access and decrypt the data directly through another host machine/operating system (such as Linux/Windows/Mac).

      • Matt

        So how come there are all these articles about the FBI and other agencies moaning that they can’t access iPhones? And did the guy on the motorcycle that snatched my iPhone 7 Plus last year gain access to my data?

      • NoFoam

        To draw attention to their agenda. They are playing the victim here.

  • Igor Engelen

    This data gathering from the FBI is all about leverage, nothing to do with public safety.
    They just had it too easy for too many years and now they think they should be treated like gods.

  • GaelicSoxFan

    And I’d be willing to bet that most government officials use Apple products because of their security.

  • Gunner Gunoil

    So Apple is “jerks” for not making it easy for FBI snooping around in peoples private data? I’m sorry FBI, do you also want my spare key for my front door…jeeezuz