FBI Unlocks iPhone, Justice Department Drops Case Against Apple
Without the assistance of Apple developers, the FBI has announced that they have accessed the data on San Bernadino terrorist Syed Farook’s iPhone. In a subsequent filing, the Department of Justice has announced that they are dropping the court order against Apple. The order sought to compel Apple developers to comply with the FBI’s request and give the bureau access to the device’s data.
The Security Discussion Continues
Apple issued this statement to TechCrunch following the news that the case would be dropped.
From the beginning, we objected to the FBI’s demand that Apple build a backdoor into the iPhone because we believed it was wrong and would set a dangerous precedent. As a result of the government’s dismissal, neither of these occurred. This case should never have been brought.
We will continue to help law enforcement with their investigations, as we have done all along, and we will continue to increase the security of our products as the threats and attacks on our data become more frequent and more sophisticated.
Apple believes deeply that people in the United States and around the world deserve data protection, security and privacy. Sacrificing one for the other only puts people and countries at greater risk.
This case raised issues which deserve a national conversation about our civil liberties, and our collective security and privacy. Apple remains committed to participating in that discussion.
There is very little information about how the FBI was able to access the data. As of now, the FBI is working with “an unknown group using an unknown method.” It is possible that the government has not yet accessed the iPhone data, but was instead unsure about the outcome of the case and thought it better to postpone proceedings for now.
We will continue to update this story as it develops.