The iPhone 11’s security proved to be a tough nut to crack, the FBI spent 2 months on it

The iPhone 11’s security proved to be a tough nut to crack, the FBI spent 2 months on it
There’s been a lot of talk lately about Apple’s encryption of iPhones. The tech giants has been at odds with the US government for a while after refusing to unlock iPhones of people under criminal investigation. We know Apple is all about privacy, but State officials think that exceptions to the rule can be made when terrorists and other wrongdoers are concerned.

Until they get Apple’s blessing, however, the FBI has created a lab dedicated to unlocking iPhones (and other devices). We talked about the facility yesterday, but today we got a report about one of its successful jobs.

Coming from Bloomberg, the report cites a letter sent to the US District Judge J. Paul Oetken. The letter was sent by US officials to inform the judge that:“First, Parnas declined to provide the password to his devices, which is of course his right, but which required the FBI to spend nearly two months unlocking the iPhone 11, ...”

Lev Parnas, the owner of the iPhone, is under investigation for his work with Rudolph Giuliani to dig up dirt on Donald Trump’s political opponent Joe Biden.

This is a good example of how Apple’s cooperation can be beneficial for authorities. Although they did eventually manage to unlock the iPhone, it took two months. These sorts of delays can be critical during ongoing trials, especially if it means that criminals get more time to act at large.

Plus, this 2-month period is not guaranteed. As we learned from the article yesterday, the computers trying to crack open iPhones use algorithms to select which PIN combinations to try. The delay between attempts means they can’t just breeze through all the 999,999 combinations a six-digit code allows for.

On the bright side, regular iPhone users can rest assured that if their phone gets stolen or lost, their data is safe. No one will go through all that trouble just to see pictures of your cats.

Related phones

iPhone 11
  • Display 6.1 inches
    1792 x 828 pixels
  • Camera 12 MP (Dual camera)
    12 MP front
  • Hardware Apple A13 Bionic, 4GB RAM
  • Storage 64GB, not expandable
  • Battery 3110 mAh
  • OS iOS 13.x

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12 Comments

14. Venom

Posts: 4095; Member since: Dec 14, 2017

The US wants Apple to create a backdoor so they can get into a criminals iPhone? This is Apple, not Huawei.

9. TS020

Posts: 75; Member since: Feb 16, 2019

Should've got the Chinese government to ask Apple, would've had it open in 30 seconds.

3. Gryffin

Posts: 96; Member since: Dec 19, 2018

What if we develop an AI that codes? Will there be no bugs and exploits left?

13. ssallen

Posts: 224; Member since: Oct 06, 2017

No, because AI is incapable of the the breadth of creativity that is required to engineer "business logic". AI may some day (no sooner than 50+ years) be able to replace human software developers but we are FAR FAR away from that. I highly doubt we will have hardware that could even run that kind of AI in 50 years honestly.

2. mariosraptor

Posts: 194; Member since: Mar 15, 2012

Wherever there's coding, there's a hole.

1. Elvis358

Posts: 301; Member since: Mar 25, 2018

So it means iPhone's are more secure than android phones!?

5. tbreezy

Posts: 272; Member since: Aug 11, 2019

It means we iPhone users don’t have much to worry about especially on iOS 13 and upwards. :) As for Android, it is so severely fragmented, there are 2018 and 2019 Android Flagships still running Android 9 with old security updates. It’s down to what device you use there, lol. Probably best to get something like a Google Pixel that gets updates on a more regular schedule GLOBALLY.

10. ssallen

Posts: 224; Member since: Oct 06, 2017

Wrong, Apple currently has so many vulnerabilities the security marketplace is selling them for MILLIONS cheaper than Android vulnerabilities. This story is a fluff piece and you are a socially engineered tool. Cuddles!

11. ssallen

Posts: 224; Member since: Oct 06, 2017

And because you will be unwilling to look it up... https://zerodium.com/program.html#changelog That coupled with full backup encryption makes my Pixel 4XL light years more secure than your latest iOS device. Now what were you (ignorantly) saying?

15. HildyJ

Posts: 346; Member since: Aug 11, 2012

"No one will go through all that trouble just to see pictures of your cats." And therein lies the ultimate iPhone vulnerability - your picture on Apple's cloud are unencrypted and Apple, bowing to the Justice Department's pressure, canceled plans to encrypt them. Your backups are there for the taking. As to the "two months" that includes the time they were trying to work with Parnas to get him to cooperate and the time it took them to decide what to do with the phone and get warrants and authorization to do it (not a short time in an extremely political case).

8. Cat97

Posts: 2055; Member since: Mar 02, 2017

This is definitely true. So if you plan on doing a shooting or planting bombs you should definitely get an iPhone.

* Some comments have been hidden, because they don't meet the discussions rules.

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