[dropcap color=”#008040″ boxed=”yes” boxed_radius=”8px” class=”” id=””]T[/dropcap]he much talked about case about Apple’s iPhone encryption and its stand to not share the encryption method with the US Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) took an interesting turn today as the FBI requested a postponement. On asked why, the replied that they may have discovered a way to break into the iPhone used by one of the San Bernardino mass shooters.
“On Sunday, March 20, 2016, an outside party demonstrated to the FBI a possible method for unlocking Farook’s iPhone,” lawyers for the government said in a court filing Monday afternoon, referring to the shooter Syed Farook. FBI further added that they were testing this method to ensure that it meets their needs before starting this case.
Refusal by Apple to share its encryption secrets has spurred many independent bodies to try and break the code and Johns Hopkins researchers claimed two days ago that they found a way into Apple’s iMessage app encryption.
[dropcap color=”#008040″ boxed=”yes” boxed_radius=”8px” class=”” id=””]C[/dropcap]ryptographers such as Matthew Green of St. John’s say that asking a court to compel a tech company such as Apple to create software to undo a security feature makes no sense — especially when there may already be bugs that can be exploited.
“Even Apple, with all their skills — and they have terrific cryptographers — wasn’t able to quite get this right,” said Green, whose team of graduate students published a paper describing the attack after Apple issued a patch. “So it scares me that we’re having this conversation about adding back doors to encryption when we can’t even get basic encryption right.”
If the FBI does manage to decipher the contents of the San Bernardino shooter Syed Farook, it can lead to some interesting consequences. Firstly, Apple will close the loop holes in its encryption methods and claim (again) that their device is secure. There maybe some speed bumps along the way (watch Apple’s stock for the next few days as this plays out) and perhaps opportunities for hackers to make a quick buck, breaking into iPhones and other Smartphones.
[dropcap color=”#008040″ boxed=”yes” boxed_radius=”8px” class=”” id=””]S[/dropcap]econdly, it will save some melodrama for the us as we will not have to weigh Apple’s decision and come to a conclusion about it. Security is only as strong as the weakest link.
Thirdly, there will be a race to claim the most secure Smartphone among Apple, Google and Microsoft. Software application vendors too will jump in and claim how they have enhanced their security manifold.
As long as all these do not slow down the devices to a crawl, people will be happy. A new Sales cycle will spur more sales and will put a smile on the vendor’s lips… until the next break-in!
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