FBI raises concerns with Apple’s marketing of encryption settings in iOS 8

James Comey

As the microscope on security, and almost every single avenue of it, continues to move from subject to subject, Apple’s now raising concerns with the Director of the FBI, James Comey, in regards to iOS 8’s encryption settings and Apple’s marketing of them.

According to a report published by the Huffington Post, Comey has been in talks with Apple recently regarding the encryption settings within iOS 8, and the fact that the company does not have the means to access any kind of data on a device running iOS 8, especially after a protection code has been implemented. As Comey puts it, Apple is “marketing something expressly to allow people to place themselves above the law.”

These comments, and the talks that the FBI is having with Apple, are in direct relation to the changes that Apple has made within iOS 8. Specifically, iOS no longer stores encryption keys for devices within the mobile operating system itself. This means that it’s impossible for Apple to unlock content on devices, even under the request of the police:

Apple said last week that it would no longer be technically feasible to unlock encrypted iPhones and iPads for law enforcement because the devices would no longer allow user passcodes to be bypassed.

Apple has recently also posted a comprehensive website regarding security, how it relates to the owners of Apple’s devices, and government requests for that information. This, too, plays a role in the conversations that the FBI is having with Apple, as the director believes that, essentially, Apple’s marketing for iOS 8 encryption is stepping over a line:

I like and believe very much that we should have to obtain a warrant from an independent judge to be able to take the content of anyone’s closet or their smart phone,” he said. “The notion that someone would market a closet that could never be opened — even if it involves a case involving a child kidnapper and a court order — to me does not make any sense.

Comey is also talking to Google regarding the same access issues. Moreover, the director is hoping that a “good conversation” can come from this.

[via The Huffington Post]