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  • Apple again rumored to goose iCloud encryption amid iPhone encryption flap

    In a move sure to complicate the ongoing Apple vs. FBI court case, Apple is reportedly developing stronger iCloud encryption methods that would prevent even it from accessing and extracting user data protected by a passcode.


    Racks of Apple's iCloud servers in Maiden, NC

    Citing sources familiar with Apple's plans, The Wall Street Journal on Tuesday reported that while preparations for a more secure iCloud are underway, executives are still trying to find a workable balance between strong encryption and customer convenience.

    Currently, iCloud can be configured to store daily device backups, messages, photos, notes and other data, much of which is accessible by Apple. But the purported plan is to encrypt that data and restrict access to holders of user-created passkeys. Apple's supposed encryption plans were first report by the Financial Times in late February.

    Today's news comes amidst a heated court battle over the unlocking of an iPhone used by San Bernardino shooter Syed Rizwan Farook. Apple was compelled by a federal magistrate judge to help the FBI in efforts to break into the device, but the company has so far resisted, sparking a contentious debate over privacy rights and national security.

    If Apple does enact stronger iCloud security measures, particularly those that would render warrants for data access moot, it could exacerbate an already tenuous situation. Currently, iCloud backups are Apple's go-to for law enforcement requests, and for agencies like the FBI are quickly becoming the only way to access data as part of a criminal investigation.

    Apple introduced strong on-device encryption with iOS 8, making it nearly impossible to extract usable information from hardware running the latest OS. Certain information, however, is sent up to the cloud and can potentially be accessed by Apple on behalf of the government. That all ends if Apple puts encryption keys wholly in the hands of consumers.

    A version of this all-or-nothing strategy is already up and running in iCloud Keychain. The feature lets users store especially sensitive data like passwords and credit card information that can be accessed remotely, synced and transferred to and from other devices. Apple does not have access to data stored in iCloud Keychain.

    [via WSJ]
    This article was originally published in forum thread: Apple again rumored to goose iCloud encryption amid iPhone encryption flap started by Caiden Spencer View original post
    Comments 3 Comments
    1. King_O_Hill's Avatar
      King_O_Hill -
      That's what I like to see!
    1. Ambi_Valence's Avatar
      Ambi_Valence -
      They don’t look like XServes….
    1. back9player's Avatar
      back9player -
      suck it, Feds

      By the way, these guys can crack that terrorist iPhone for the FBI. No problem.

      Cellebrite