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As Justice Department Pressures Apple, Investigators Say iPhone is Easier to Crack

By The Wall Street Journal

January 15, 2020

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Security experts said new hacking tools can more easily crack many Apple gadgets, even as the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) pressures Apple to provide access to the contents of two iPhones owned by a Saudi aviation student who allegedly killed three people at a U.S. Navy base in Florida last month.

Apple said DOJ notified the company that the Federal Bureau of Investigation required additional access, following Apple's provision of iCloud backups, account information, and transactional data for one of the suspect's iPhones.

Companies like Grayshift offer methods for extracting data from recent iPhone models, while new forensics products could likely retrieve the iPhone's data for $15,000 or less; one tool built with Checkm8 software exploits an unpatchable flaw in Apple's hardware, and operates on all iPhone devices.

Sarah Edwards of the SANS Institute, which trains cybersecurity investigators, said, "It's a cat-and-mouse game. Apple locks things, but if someone wants to find a way to get into these devices, they will find a way."

From The Wall Street Journal
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