Apple says "No" - the Threat to Data Security

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Staffordshire University
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#1
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#1
You've probably heard in the news that Apple has opposed a US order to unlock an iPhone of one of the suspects involved in the San Bernardino attack. This would involve Apple making "a new version of the iPhone operating system... and install[ing] it on an iPhone that was recovered during the investigation."

One of our computing lecturers has written a blog post about this.

He asks: "should Governments be able to wield and exercise power that forces the hand of technology companies?"

What do you think? Are Apple right in refusing? Are you concerned about your data security...?
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Mayhem™
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#2
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#2
Apple have every right to deny what the government want, and I support the company. If the request was accepted, it would put the safety of millions of people at risk and that simply cannot be allowed to happen.

Personally I won't be affected; I have a Samsung
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Mentally
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#3
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#3
Yes theyre completely right. Although this wont allow the government to spy and track and track down all users the first step is usually the most dangerous. If Apple succumbs to the pressure the government will push for more eventually asking forna backdoor for all IOS phones.
Isnt it absurd how we are begging technology firms like facebook and Apple to keep and secure our privacy and the Government are tryingn to steal it?
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the bear
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#4
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#4
these huge companies wield more power than many Governments now. they run rings around tax regimes and now it seems they decide what should be encrypted or not.
the Chinese Government would not allow this to happen... one can be sure that Huawei & co will build backdoors into their products for the guys in Peking to use.
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Good bloke
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#5
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#5
Apple should comply.

This is a convicted terrorist's phone; it is likely to hold data that could save my life (by allowing the FBI to prevent another outrage); the requested fix can only work on this phone (if it is a feasible fix in the first place). There is no public downside to complying, therefore.

Apple's stance is directly comparable to a bomb disposal expert refusing to defuse a booby-trap on the grounds that doing so would break the privacy of the person whose front door is booby-trapped.

I won't be buying an more Apple products.
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z33
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#6
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#6
#AndroidFTW
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DiddyDec01
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#7
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#7
(Original post by z33)
#AndroidFTW
You don't even need a backdoor.

Posted from TSR Mobile
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Someboady
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#8
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#8
Not an Apple Fan.. Never liked their products or their attitude to the technological world. BUT. They've done a pretty good job on this front
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Dez
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#9
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#9
(Original post by Good bloke)
Apple's stance is directly comparable to a bomb disposal expert refusing to defuse a booby-trap on the grounds that doing so would break the privacy of the person whose front door is booby-trapped.
Really it's more like a professional safe builder refusing to break open one of their customer's safes. If they complied, anyone watching how they did it could apply the same trick and break into other safes made by the same people. Thus making all of their products, both past and future, potentially insecure.

This is what Apple is faced with. They are being asked by the government to hack their own operating system. Any information about this hack that the rest of the world got wind of could potentially leave millions of phones vulnerable to attack. Heartbleed all over again. They've definitely taken the correct stance on this, in my opinion.
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Good bloke
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#10
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#10
(Original post by Dez)
Really it's more like a professional safe builder refusing to break open one of their customer's safes. If they complied, anyone watching how they did it could apply the same trick and break into other safes made by the same people. Thus making all of their products, both past and future, potentially insecure.

This is what Apple is faced with. They are being asked by the government to hack their own operating system. Any information about this hack that the rest of the world got wind of could potentially leave millions of phones vulnerable to attack. Heartbleed all over again. They've definitely taken the correct stance on this, in my opinion.
But nobody will be watching them do it, and it isn't just a question of opening a safe: lives are potentially at risk.

The only people involved would be the Apple software team who would divulge nothing. They could release the phone, dump its data and then close it again and destroy their code for all the FBI cares.
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Zeroic
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#11
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#11
Apple going HAM on there security
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Dez
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#12
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#12
(Original post by Good bloke)
But nobody will be watching them do it, and it isn't just a question of opening a safe: lives are potentially at risk.

The only people involved would be the Apple software team who would divulge nothing. They could release the phone, dump its data and then close it again and destroy their code for all the FBI cares.
It's still very risky. Lives may be in danger, but so is the privacy of millions of users (some of which may well endanger other lives). The FBI can continue to investigate using other means, and do what they can with the information available to them, as they always do.
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Good bloke
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#13
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#13
(Original post by Dez)
It's still very risky.
How? No information useful to hackers would leave Apple.

(Original post by Dez)
Lives may be in danger, but so is the privacy of millions of users (some of which may well endanger other lives).
How is anyone else's privacy in danger if Apple approaches it as I suggested?

(Original post by Dez)
The FBI can continue to investigate using other means, and do what they can with the information available to them, as they always do.
But they can't, which is why Apple have been approached. The phone is booby-trapped.
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GoldenFang
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#14
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#14
(Original post by Staffordshire University)
What do you think? Are Apple right in refusing? Are you concerned about your data security...?
Apple are showing their corporate arrogance in believing themselves to be above a lawfully-issued warrant.

Further to that, it makes no sense that people would say it's legitimate for the government to search your house if they have a lawfully-issued warrant, but not your phone
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GoldenFang
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#15
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#15
(Original post by Dez)
It's still very risky. Lives may be in danger, but so is the privacy of millions of users (some of which may well endanger other lives). The FBI can continue to investigate using other means, and do what they can with the information available to them, as they always do.
What makes a phone different from an address book? Why should the government be able to read your address book with a lawfully issued warrant, but not the data from your phone?
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Unkempt_One
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#16
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#16
(Original post by Good bloke)
But nobody will be watching them do it, and it isn't just a question of opening a safe: lives are potentially at risk.

The only people involved would be the Apple software team who would divulge nothing. They could release the phone, dump its data and then close it again and destroy their code for all the FBI cares.
English translation of potentially: not. Compared to the risks imposed on the security of customers of creating the software there is a very low probability information acquired on his phone would lead to preventing a terrorist attack.

"The only people involved would be the Apple software team who would divulge nothing. They could release the phone, dump its data and then close it again and destroy their code for all the FBI cares."

You're confusing the ideal scenario with the actual risk-benefit landscape, seemingly a confounding problem for over-zealous law enforcement nowadays. Unless there's a 100% foolproof way to ensure that the software is not leaked, the risks are completely unacceptable. Also, it's not simply about this individual case but also the legal precedent set of law enforcement being allowed break encryption to get access to someone's phone. Apple must challenge this.
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Elizabeth II
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#17
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#17
(Original post by Dez)
Really it's more like a professional safe builder refusing to break open one of their customer's safes. If they complied, anyone watching how they did it could apply the same trick and break into other safes made by the same people. Thus making all of their products, both past and future, potentially insecure.

This is what Apple is faced with. They are being asked by the government to hack their own operating system. Any information about this hack that the rest of the world got wind of could potentially leave millions of phones vulnerable to attack. Heartbleed all over again. They've definitely taken the correct stance on this, in my opinion.
I am SO glad you replied because this needed to be said.
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Unkempt_One
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#18
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#18
(Original post by GoldenFang)
Apple are showing their corporate arrogance in believing themselves to be above a lawfully-issued warrant.

Further to that, it makes no sense that people would say it's legitimate for the government to search your house if they have a lawfully-issued warrant, but not your phone
The two situations aren't comparable. Under a warrant the police are only allowed to seize items which directly pertain to the case at hand, or the items have clearly been illegally obtained. When you access someone's phone there are no such safeguards against abuse of search powers.
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Good bloke
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#19
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#19
(Original post by Unkempt_One)
"The only people involved would be the Apple software team who would divulge nothing. They could release the phone, dump its data and then close it again and destroy their code for all the FBI cares."

You're confusing the ideal scenario with the actual risk-benefit landscape
Having managed the development of software in secure environments, I can assure you that a properly selected and tight group in such an environment would pose next to no risk to the public. This is scare-mongering of the first water: we aren't talking of hacking into a commercial website here - there would be no need to be on a network at all.
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Unkempt_One
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#20
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#20
(Original post by Good bloke)
Having managed the development of software in secure environments, I can assure you that a properly selected and tight group in such an environment would pose next to no risk to the public. This is scare-mongering of the first water: we aren't talking of hacking into a commercial website here - there would be no need to be on a network at all.
So I assume your experience means nothing when applied to a large commercial company like Apple.
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