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#1
http://www.apple.com/customer-letter/

February 16, 2016

A Message to Our Customers
The United States government has demanded that Apple take an unprecedented step which threatens the security of our customers. We oppose this order, which has implications far beyond the legal case at hand.

This moment calls for public discussion, and we want our customers and people around the country to understand what is at stake.

The Need for Encryption
Smartphones, led by iPhone, have become an essential part of our lives. People use them to store an incredible amount of personal information, from our private conversations to our photos, our music, our notes, our calendars and contacts, our financial information and health data, even where we have been and where we are going.

All that information needs to be protected from hackers and criminals who want to access it, steal it, and use it without our knowledge or permission. Customers expect Apple and other technology companies to do everything in our power to protect their personal information, and at Apple we are deeply committed to safeguarding their data.

Compromising the security of our personal information can ultimately put our personal safety at risk. That is why encryption has become so important to all of us.

For many years, we have used encryption to protect our customers’ personal data because we believe it’s the only way to keep their information safe. We have even put that data out of our own reach, because we believe the contents of your iPhone are none of our business.

The San Bernardino Case
We were shocked and outraged by the deadly act of terrorism in San Bernardino last December. We mourn the loss of life and want justice for all those whose lives were affected. The FBI asked us for help in the days following the attack, and we have worked hard to support the government’s efforts to solve this horrible crime. We have no sympathy for terrorists.

When the FBI has requested data that’s in our possession, we have provided it. Apple complies with valid subpoenas and search warrants, as we have in the San Bernardino case. We have also made Apple engineers available to advise the FBI, and we’ve offered our best ideas on a number of investigative options at their disposal.

We have great respect for the professionals at the FBI, and we believe their intentions are good. Up to this point, we have done everything that is both within our power and within the law to help them. But now the U.S. government has asked us for something we simply do not have, and something we consider too dangerous to create. They have asked us to build a backdoor to the iPhone.

Specifically, the FBI wants us to make a new version of the iPhone operating system, circumventing several important security features, and install it on an iPhone recovered during the investigation. In the wrong hands, this software — which does not exist today — would have the potential to unlock any iPhone in someone’s physical possession.

The FBI may use different words to describe this tool, but make no mistake: Building a version of iOS that bypasses security in this way would undeniably create a backdoor. And while the government may argue that its use would be limited to this case, there is no way to guarantee such control.

The Threat to Data Security
Some would argue that building a backdoor for just one iPhone is a simple, clean-cut solution. But it ignores both the basics of digital security and the significance of what the government is demanding in this case.

In today’s digital world, the “key” to an encrypted system is a piece of information that unlocks the data, and it is only as secure as the protections around it. Once the information is known, or a way to bypass the code is revealed, the encryption can be defeated by anyone with that knowledge.

The government suggests this tool could only be used once, on one phone. But that’s simply not true. Once created, the technique could be used over and over again, on any number of devices. In the physical world, it would be the equivalent of a master key, capable of opening hundreds of millions of locks — from restaurants and banks to stores and homes. No reasonable person would find that acceptable.

The government is asking Apple to hack our own users and undermine decades of security advancements that protect our customers — including tens of millions of American citizens — from sophisticated hackers and cybercriminals. The same engineers who built strong encryption into the iPhone to protect our users would, ironically, be ordered to weaken those protections and make our users less safe.

We can find no precedent for an American company being forced to expose its customers to a greater risk of attack. For years, cryptologists and national security experts have been warning against weakening encryption. Doing so would hurt only the well-meaning and law-abiding citizens who rely on companies like Apple to protect their data. Criminals and bad actors will still encrypt, using tools that are readily available to them.

A Dangerous Precedent
Rather than asking for legislative action through Congress, the FBI is proposing an unprecedented use of the All Writs Act of 1789 to justify an expansion of its authority.

The government would have us remove security features and add new capabilities to the operating system, allowing a passcode to be input electronically. This would make it easier to unlock an iPhone by “brute force,” trying thousands or millions of combinations with the speed of a modern computer.

The implications of the government’s demands are chilling. If the government can use the All Writs Act to make it easier to unlock your iPhone, it would have the power to reach into anyone’s device to capture their data. The government could extend this breach of privacy and demand that Apple build surveillance software to intercept your messages, access your health records or financial data, track your location, or even access your phone’s microphone or camera without your knowledge.

Opposing this order is not something we take lightly. We feel we must speak up in the face of what we see as an overreach by the U.S. government.

We are challenging the FBI’s demands with the deepest respect for American democracy and a love of our country. We believe it would be in the best interest of everyone to step back and consider the implications.

While we believe the FBI’s intentions are good, it would be wrong for the government to force us to build a backdoor into our products. And ultimately, we fear that this demand would undermine the very freedoms and liberty our government is meant to protect.

Tim Cook


what do yall think
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#2
fuk the po po and fuk big brotha
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#4
I have zero trust in either of those organizations.
This is like two rival gangs engaging war in your neighborhood.
You're still fucked no matter who wins.
#7
I'd rather err on the side of security and think they should cooperate with the FBI
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#9
There's a lot of misinformation going around. My primary concern is that this isn't something that a court order should be sufficient for. A court order has a lower threshold than a warrant. This should require a warrant.

Basically, iPhones are far more secure than any other mobile device (lolAndroid). One example is that they AES encrypt the phone which makes it impossible to crack without quantum computers (unless you want to spend longer than the length of the universe to do so). Another is that there's a feature you can enable that will wipe your device if someone tries to enter a passcode 10 times.

But they have something called DFU mode which allows Apple to update the firmware even if the device is locked (which it is). The caveat is that the firmware needs to be signed by Apple, and by signature, I'm referring to a secret (digital) key that authenticates that the firmware is coming from Apple and not a third party. This is something impossible to counterfeit.

The government wants Apple to create firmware that would allow them to bypass the 10 attempt restriction, bypass another feature that limits how quickly you can input passcodes, and bypass another feature that makes you have to manually press the buttons instead of using a laptop cracking software. This would allow the FBI to input passwords every 80 milliseconds. If the passcode is 4 digits, this would mean they will be able to gain access within the hour. If it's an alphanumeric code, Apple may as well not lift a finger anyway.

Given that each phone has its own unique hardware key, it should be possible to make firmware unique to that iPhone (meaning it wouldn't work on any others). In addition, all newer iPhones come equipped with something called Secure Enclave, which would make any attempts at intrusion obsolete.

As such, if the government were to be able to prove that there was actual data that would be necessary for them to possess, and they could get a warrant, they should be able to get the data.

This is all predicated on the assumption that this in fact wouldn't weaken the ecosystem of data security which, to my knowledge, it wouldn't. I need to talk to more cybersecurity experts before that assumption becomes more justified.
Last edited by justwanttosay at Feb 17, 2016,
#10
I'm already uncomfortable with the fact that you can't take your battery/SIM card out of your phone at will with newer models, but yada yada 'built into the design'.
.
#11
What a terrific marketing opportunity.

...modes and scales are still useless.


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#12
Quote by ali.guitarkid7
What's stopping people from doing this anyway?

the iPhone currently has a lock so that after a few incorrect attempts at entering a phone code, the phone is no longer accessible until Apple is called directly by the owner and the 4-digit code is recited. there is no way for Apple to currently access iPhone data without a user's PIN.
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#13
How about shipping the phone off to England and letting their government ask for an unlock software? Then have them send their findings back to us...

I mean say we had the info to stop a terrorist attack that would kill hundreds but we needed a phone unlocked. Do we sacrifice those people in the name of our freedom?
Last edited by metaldud536 at Feb 17, 2016,
#14
Quote by metaldud536
How about shipping the phone off to England and letting their government ask for an unlock software? Then have them send their findings back to us...

I mean say we had the info to stop a terrorist attack that would kill hundreds but we needed a phone unlocked. Do we sacrifice those people in the name of our freedom?


Are they Kanye fans?
#15
so apple can load a U2 album onto everyone's phone but won't help stop terrorism?? I think we now know the real enemy
Xbox Live: DeSquared94
PSN: desquared94
#16
^ tbh that shit is alarming and I am happy I didnt have U2 default loaded onto my device lol
Quote by Arthur Curry
it's official, vintage x metal is the saving grace of this board and/or the antichrist




e-married to
theguitarist
minterman22
tateandlyle
& alaskan_ninja

#17
basically i trust noone and im sure apple is being a turd in some way

that is all


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#18
didnt read, but anyone in favour of encryption backdoors is an absolute moron

that is all i have to say about this
ggg1 ggg3

.
#19
Quote by Fat Lard
I'm already uncomfortable with the fact that you can't take your battery/SIM card out of your phone at will with newer models, but yada yada 'built into the design'.

and this

if i cant open it it's the devil


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le vkup, le vkup z menoj,
staro pravdo v mrak tulimo,
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#20
Quote by justwanttosay
There's a lot of misinformation going around. My primary concern is that this isn't something that a court order should be sufficient for. A court order has a lower threshold than a warrant. This should require a warrant.

I'm no lawyer but if u read the court order they mention a warrant. paragraph labelled 1
https://www.documentcloud.org/documents/2714001-SB-Shooter-Order-Compelling-Apple-Asst-iPhone.html
I think they already have a warrant, and they've ordered apple to assist with carrying it out. Not sure though.
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#21
So Apple has all this security software and encryption stuff, yet setting your iPhone back to Jan 1 1970 totally fucks it?

gg Apple, gg.
#22
so apparently apple isn't real clear on the difference between a legit security concern and just invading privacy. they probably just don't wanna be called racist. can't offend people
#24
Also the FBI can't prevent a damn thing even if all the phones in the world were handed over to them.
#25
Edward Snowden is backing Apple. Edward Snowden from his hiding place in Vladimir Putin's Russia is warning us about government overreach. What bravery.
Quote by jakesmellspoo
ooh look at me i'm ERIKLENSHERR and i work at fancy pants desk jobs and wear ties and ply barely legal girls with weed and booze i'm such a classy motherfucker.
#26
Quote by EyeNon15
Also the FBI can't prevent a damn thing even if all the phones in the world were handed over to them.
I agree, but isn't there a difference when you know you have a direct source. I'm not about the government tapping into everyones phone, but these aren't innocent citizens.
#27
Quote by Gatecrasher53
I'm no lawyer but if u read the court order they mention a warrant. paragraph labelled 1
https://www.documentcloud.org/documents/2714001-SB-Shooter-Order-Compelling-Apple-Asst-iPhone.html
I think they already have a warrant, and they've ordered apple to assist with carrying it out. Not sure though.


No, they're using warrant in a different way, though that is confusing.
#28
Quote by mattedbird
I'm not about the government tapping into everyones phone

That's the only option.
They arent going to only search an Iphone every 15 years when a terrorist attack happens. That ridiculously naive to think so.
#29
Quote by ErikLensherr
Edward Snowden is backing Apple. Edward Snowden from his hiding place in Vladimir Putin's Russia is warning us about government overreach. What bravery.


Oh please. Everyone that knows anything about IT and how private/public key encryption works could tell you that introducing """backdoors""" just makes cybersecurity much less safe, and easier for independent hackers to gain access to.

Trust FBI with that stuff, when the IRS just had another 100,000+ people breach of taxpayer's personal info/SSN's/etc? As if the incompetent gov't could make us safer
.
Last edited by Fat Lard at Feb 18, 2016,
#30
Quote by Fat Lard
Oh please. Everyone that knows anything about IT and how private/public key encryption works could tell you that introducing """backdoors""" just makes cybersecurity much less safe, and easier for independent hackers to gain access to.

Trust FBI with that stuff, when the IRS just had another 100,000+ people breach of taxpayer's personal info/SSN's/etc? As if the incompetent gov't could make us safer


Actually it was more like 350,000 people. And don't forget about OPM.
#31
Quote by JamSessionFreak at #33840409
and this

if i cant open it it's the devil

this is my philosophy with many things
I'm a failed engineer
I must repair it myself
Whatever it may be
#32
Over/under
Place your bets.

Iphones will be antiques by the time another terrorist attack happens in usa
#33
Quote by EyeNon15
Over/under
Place your bets.

Iphones will be antiques by the time another terrorist attack happens in usa


LOL. The only reason this is even an issue is because Apple's phones are way more secure than anyone gives them credit for. The FBI's never had to make this request of Google because they have no problem breaking into Android phones.

People give Apple shit for a bunch of reasons, and some of them are definitely valid. But they developed a lot of groundbreaking tech that people don't give enough credit to. When they introduced the fingerprint sensor, that came along with one of the most significant developments mobile technology has ever seen. Yeah, they're never really first to market with new features, but meanwhile, they're acquiring and partnering with companies left and right so they can optimize them. Just for the TouchID they had to spend like 10 years developing encryption technology while acquiring a biometrics company while partnering with a hardware company to design a processor that incorporates encryption at the native level.

The reason Apple phones will always be way superior to Android phones is because they build both the hardware and the software, and from a tech perspective, that allows them to build a significantly better product on both fronts.

That doesn't mean everyone should own an iPhone. But it does mean that they'll never be antiques.
#34
You are saying that Apple has great tech, therefore the IPhone will last forever?
Stone cold logic


That's really not the point anyway, I'm just saying it's pretty laughable to claim this is about terrorism.
With the relative rarity of terrorist attacks in the US, and the light speed at which technology advances these days.
Last edited by EyeNon15 at Feb 18, 2016,
#35
No, I'm saying Apple has a great design philosophy of vertical integration, total control, and perfectionism. And THAT means the iPhone will last forever.

It's not about your tech. It's about the approach you use to develop your tech. It's what Steve Jobs pioneered, and it's why Apple is the most successful and valuable company in the world.

edit: and nah, there's going to be one relatively soon.
Last edited by justwanttosay at Feb 18, 2016,
#36
Again, not the point but I'm not seeing the logic of the separate argument you are conducting.
Seems like you are just repeating that because something good was made bettet than other products, that guarantees it lasts forever.
#37
Quote by ErikLensherr
I'd rather err on the side of security and think they should cooperate with the FBI

i think not complying is erring on the side of security tho
#38
Quote by EyeNon15
Again, not the point but I'm not seeing the logic of the separate argument you are conducting.
Seems like you are just repeating that because something good was made bettet than other products, that guarantees it lasts forever.


Did you actually read what I said?
#39
Quote by justwanttosay
Did you actually read what I said?

Yeh you threw out a bunch of fancy words that looked like you were quoting an iPhone commercial.
I just summed it up by saying "better" rather than typing all that.
#40
If the FBI need the phone unlocked so badly, why dont they just take it to the Asian bloke who owns the mobile phone accessories stand in their local shopping centre? He'll do it for a tenner and probs give them a good price on a nice new phone case.
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