Attorney General says tech companies should break strong encryption

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Apple: Keep Out, privacy
Barr's comments won't win him any friends in Cupertino!
Photo: Apple

Attorney general William Barr has a warning for tech companies using strong encryption: You need to be willing to break it.

In a keynote at the International Conference on Cyber Security in New York, Barr stressed that it is important that law enforcement can crack encrypted messages when they need to do so. The comments are likely to win Barr no friends in Cupertino, given Apple’s stance on privacy.

Trump administration weighs banning end-to-end encryption

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hacking
Encryption could be the next big conflict between Apple and the White House.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

Apple has banged heads with the Trump administration before, but its biggest clash could be yet to come.

According to a new report, senior White House officials met this week to discuss banning end-to-end encryption. This would affect a number of tech companies — including Apple, which has long touted its focus on user privacy.

Keep your Apple device’s data secure with this VPN [Deals]

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This powerful, intuitive VPN is available at a massive discount, so there's no reason not to stay secure online.
This powerful, intuitive VPN is available at a massive discount, so there's no reason not to stay secure online.
Photo: Cult of Mac Deals

Everyone knows that going online is risky business, so why don’t more people use a virtual private network? Maybe it’s the high cost of some VPNs, or the worry that securing your online anonymity will be a hassle.

With this massive deal on a powerful, simple-to-use VPN, neither of those excuses apply.

Free VPN app encrypts iPhone connection for safer browsing

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Cloudflare‘s 1.1.1.1 App with Warp adds encryption for safer iPhone internet access.
Cloudflare‘s 1.1.1.1 App with Warp adds encryption for more secure iPhone internet access.
Photo: Cloudflare

Cloudflare’s 1.1.1.1 App blocks your wireless carrier from knowing the sites you visit on your iPhone. An update adds encryption to all connections, while also promising faster access for all apps.

1.1.1.1 App with Warp will remain free, but Cloudflare is launching an even quicker version for a monthly fee.

Browse and torrent securely with a powerful VPN [Deals]

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Browse, stream, torrent, and more from unlimited devices and through unlimited bandwidth with this premium VPN.
Browse, stream, torrent, and more from unlimited devices and through unlimited bandwidth with this premium VPN.
Photo: Cult of Mac Deals

If you’re concerned about security and privacy online, browsing with a VPN is the only way to go. But if you need high speed connections for things like streaming or torrenting, details matter. So this deal on a year of Surfshark is a great opportunity for the performance-minded VPN users.

FBI got warrant to force Face ID unlock on Cohen’s devices

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Michael Cohen Face ID
Michael Cohen was forced by a court warrant to open his iPhone with Face ID.
Photo: Apple

Michael Cohen’s Apple devices were treated as evidence by federal investigators, who obtained warrants to compel President’s Trump one-time fixer to use Touch ID and Face ID to unlock them.

The warrants were used during an FBI raid on Cohen’s home and office last year. Court documents with warrant details were made public this week.

EFF pushes Apple to ‘fix’ iCloud encryption

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iCloud iPhone
Your iCloud data isn’t truly secure because Apple can always access it.
Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

In a campaign called “Fix it Already!,” the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) is urging tech giants to remedy nine security and privacy problems in their products. 

In Apple’s case, it wants the iPhone maker to encrypt iCloud backups so that only users can access them. 

iPhone hacking tools sell for as little as $100 on eBay

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Cekkebrite
One of Cellebrite's hacking devices.
Photo: Tryc2/ebay

The Cellebrite hacking tool used by law enforcers for pulling data off locked iPhones costs $6,000 new. However, used units now show up on eBay for as little as $100.

That’s a big discount from the full price. And it seems that Cellebrite, a security firm based in Israel, isn’t too happy about the situation — with very good reason.