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  #41  
Old 19 February 2016, 09:13 PM
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I would guess that Apple will avoid the "make them do work" argument as that would suggest that it would be okay if the FBI compelled them to supply all the source code so that the FBI could engineer the modified OS.
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  #42  
Old 19 February 2016, 09:20 PM
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I don't think they will avoid it. I think it will be part of and argument about how far of an overreach this is. It will not suggest, IMO, that it would be OK if they turned over their source code. That would be at least as much of an overreach. It's in contrast to the fact that they can and do comply with subpoenas for existing information that is in their possession, such as files that have been uploaded to cloud servers they control.
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  #43  
Old 19 February 2016, 09:31 PM
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I always forget that you can layer arguments and include arguments that are divergent.
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  #44  
Old 20 February 2016, 07:29 AM
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Cell Phone

"Apple: We tried to help FBI terror probe, but someone changed iCloud password" Ars Technica 19 February 2016:
Quote:
On Friday, an Apple executive explicitly confirmed what was stated in a government court filing earlier in the day: that in the early hours of the San Bernardino terrorism investigation, county officials may have inadvertently compromised their ability to access the data on the seized iPhone 5C.

{ snip }

Apple suggested that the FBI take the iPhone 5C, plug it into a wall, connect it to a known Wi-Fi network and leave it overnight. The FBI took the phone to the San Bernardino County Health Department, where Farook worked prior to the December 2, 2015 attack.

When that attempt did not work, Apple was mystified, but soon found out that the Apple ID account password had been changed shortly after the phone was in the custody of law enforcement, possibly by someone from the county health department. With no way to enter the new password on the locked phone, even attempting an auto-backup was impossible. Had this iCloud auto-backup method actually functioned, Apple would have been easily able to assist the FBI with its investigation.
I found this quote quite chilling:
Quote:
The Apple executive also made a point of saying that no other government—not even China or Russia—has ever asked what American prosecutors have asked the company to do this week.
Quote:
Originally Posted by E. Q. Taft View Post
McAfee will break iPhone crypto for FBI in 3 weeks or eat shoe on live TV

In an op-ed for Business Insider titled "I'll decrypt the San Bernardino phone free of charge so Apple doesn't need to place a back door on its product," libertarian presidential candidate and former antivirus developer John McAfee waded into the ongoing battle of words between Apple and the FBI with some choice words of his own.
While John McAfee is a bit of a kook, to put it mildly, he does have a valid point here, I think, when he says he and his team will primarily use social engineering. For example, during the infamous leak of celebrity nudes in 2014 it turned out that the hackers used social engineering and did not hack Apple's iCloud service as many had originally thought.
Quote:
Naked photos of Jennifer Lawrence and dozens of other celebrities were hacked from their Apple devices with the aid of phishing, according to a source familiar with the investigation.
However, my gut feeling is that even if they access the phone's data they won't find anything useful since I can't believe Farook would have been that careless. I think the FBI is setting a dangerous precedent for a remote chance to gather useful data.

Brian
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  #45  
Old 20 February 2016, 09:19 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BrianB View Post
I think the FBI is setting a dangerous precedent for a remote chance to gather useful data.
I think the dangerous precedent is the point, and the remote chance of useful data is the justification. They'd like this tool for other cases.

Quote:
Originally Posted by BrianB View Post
However, my gut feeling is that even if they access the phone's data they won't find anything useful since I can't believe Farook would have been that careless.
He seemed like a careless dude to me. But I doubt particularly well-connected.
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  #46  
Old 20 February 2016, 02:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BrianB View Post
[...] he does have a valid point here, I think, when he says he and his team will primarily use social engineering. [...]
I guess that's a valid point in some cases but phishing is not very effective on dead people.
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  #47  
Old 20 February 2016, 05:17 PM
jimmy101_again jimmy101_again is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Errata View Post
I think the dangerous precedent is the point, and the remote chance of useful data is the justification. They'd like this tool for other cases.
Exactly, this is why they chose the Farook case instead of any of the hundreds of other cases that could have been used. Cases that involve much less sensational crimes. Set the precedence with a high profile terrorism case then use that precedence for thousands of low level crimes.
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  #48  
Old 21 February 2016, 12:39 AM
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You don't think it's possible that the local FBI just really wants to get into that phone?

7 terrorists in one area within a few years (these 4 from Riverside County, Farook, his wife, and friend Enrique who attended mosques in Riverside and neighboring San Bernardino) seems like something authorities might legitimately be worried about.
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  #49  
Old 21 February 2016, 12:48 AM
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No one is saying they shouldn't want to get into the phone, or want to investigate. But if they were going to try to force cooperation through the courts because they want this tool, of course they would think this case would be a good one to try with.

But as legitimate as their interest is, this should not be considered a legitimate means. Even if we knew it would save lives to get into that phone, it could easily cost more lives when oppressive regimes get ahold of the same tool to monitor their citizens.
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  #50  
Old 21 February 2016, 02:13 AM
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I see your argument, and think your "illegitimate means" point is valid.

But would oppressive regimes be guaranteed to get ahold of it if the software stayed in Apple's care? I suppose they could try to limit Apple sales within their countries in exchange for the software, but it's not a forgone conclusion.

That argument also assumes iPhones are being used in moral but unlawful ways in other countries, and that this use is something that should be protected at the cost of lives that could be saved from immoral criminal activity (through legitimate warrants) everywhere iPhones are available.
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  #51  
Old 21 February 2016, 02:39 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Little Pink Pill View Post
That argument also assumes iPhones are being used in moral but unlawful ways in other countries, and that this use is something that should be protected at the cost of lives that could be saved from immoral criminal activity (through legitimate warrants) everywhere iPhones are available.
There is also the general principle of the thing, like how someone who is acting neither illegally nor immorally could (and perhaps even should) still object to a police search.

More to the point, even a well-meaning and not overly oppressive government like (hopefully) our own can have data breaches, in which the non-incriminating but sensitive information it obtains through perfectly legal and above-board means (eg: as part of a voluntary security clearance investigation or to make electronic payments to an employee) is breached by another government or criminals.

Unlimited access for the government can become unlimited access for a third party if the security of government databases is breached. And it is. All the time.
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  #52  
Old 21 February 2016, 07:36 AM
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Cell Phone FBI told San Bernardino County staff to tamper with gunman's Apple account

http://www.theguardian.com/technolog...-apple-account
Quote:
The San Bernardino County government on Friday night said the FBI told its staff to tamper with the Apple account of Syed Farook, who with his wife, Tashfeen Malik, carried out the December shooting in which 14 people were killed.

The development matters because the change made to the account – a reset of Farook's iCloud password – made it impossible to see if there was another way to get access to data on the shooter's iPhone without taking Apple to court.
Incredible. Many here (including me) have said "don't read the comments." However, I really liked this one:
Quote:
This could have all been avoided it the County, who gave Farook the phone, would have used proper administrative password management. Then they, and not the dead terrorist, would be in control of the device password.
Bingo! There are dozens and dozens of Mobile Device Management (MDM) software packages that would have prevented this fiasco. Unfortunately, it looks like Farook's department did not require it:
Quote:
The legal showdown over U.S. demands that Apple Inc unlock an iPhone used by San Bernardino shooter Rizwan Farook might have been avoided if his employer, which owns the device, had equipped it with special mobile phone software it issues to many workers.

San Bernardino County, which employed Farook as an environmental health inspector, requires some, but not all, of its workers to install mobile-device management software made by Silicon Valley-based MobileIron Inc on government-issued phones, according to county spokesman David Wert.

{ snip }

"If that particular iPhone was using MobileIron, the county's IT department could unlock it," MobileIron Vice President Ojas Rege told Reuters.

The problem is that the MobileIron software was not installed on Farook's phone because his department did not use it. "The app was not installed on that device," Wert said.
Unbelievable.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Errata View Post
I think the dangerous precedent is the point, and the remote chance of useful data is the justification. They'd like this tool for other cases.
Thanks. Very nicely put.

Brian
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  #53  
Old 21 February 2016, 08:01 AM
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I'm not sure I get the point of your frustration with that second part. Are you implying that people who use phones provided by their employers should all have software to allow that device to be unlocked in such a case? It doesn't seem to be a headbangingly obvious solution - nor necessarily a particularly good one.
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  #54  
Old 21 February 2016, 01:02 PM
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That's not the only functionality that MDMs provide.
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  #55  
Old 21 February 2016, 01:53 PM
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It is poor management, I think, for an employer, particularly a public employer, to not use administrative controls that permit them to access devices they own.
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  #56  
Old 21 February 2016, 02:00 PM
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Indeed - in our company, if the device is owned by the company or you are using the device to access work resources, you need to have the MDM software installed so that we can log, mange, and administer the device for our protection in case you are doing anything against policy with said device or if we need to administer and support the device.

We have had several employees that have forgotten their unlock code in the past and with one command on the server, we can force a reset of of the unlock code and get the person back in. Another scenario? We need to wipe the device of an employee that was being termed and suspected of leaking information to a competitor. MDM servers make that easy. It seems obvious to me - if its company property or used for work, the company needs a way to monitor and control the device centrally just like a computer would be.
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  #57  
Old 21 February 2016, 02:27 PM
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It seems odd and either stupid or calculated that the FBI would have had someone mess with the account without either knowing what effect that would have or consulting with Apple about what effect that would have.
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  #58  
Old 21 February 2016, 09:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Little Pink Pill View Post
You don't think it's possible that the local FBI just really wants to get into that phone?
I think they absolutely do want into the phone and it might even be sufficient reason to permanently cripple security on all smart phones. In the NPR stories last week they talked with a prosecutor in NY that said that had about 150 apple phones they would like to get into. They could have brought any of those cases forward as the precedent setting case but didn't.
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  #59  
Old 21 February 2016, 10:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lainie View Post
That's not the only functionality that MDMs provide.
OK... and?  
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  #60  
Old 21 February 2016, 10:44 PM
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(To Jimmy) It's definitely possible they are being opportunistic.
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