Published On: Mon, Feb 22nd, 2016

In Employee Email, Apple CEO Tim Cook Calls For Commission On Interaction Of Technology And Intelligence Gathering


Early this morning, Apple CEO Tim Cook sent an email out to employees about a FBI’s ask to clear an iPhone with a theme line ‘Thank we for your support’. The email outlines some responses to Cook’s open minute final week and paints a emanate of Apple’s refusal to concur as one of polite liberties.

In a email, Cook calls for a FBI sequence to be dropped, and outlines some arguments.

“This box is about many some-more than a singular phone or a singular investigation, so when we perceived a government’s sequence we knew we had to pronounce out. At interest is a information confidence of hundreds of millions of law-abiding people, and environment a dangerous fashion that threatens everyone’s polite liberties,“ says Cook in a email.

Cook says that some advocates of a government’s order, that we have lonesome in fact here, wish it to “roll back” information protections to a indicate during that they were as of iOS 7. In iPhones regulating comparison versions of iOS, Apple was means to mislay information from inclination even yet they were sealed with a personal pin code. Apple has never unbarred inclination for a government, a common myth among some media covering this ongoing story.

The many new growth in a box came over a weekend, when a FBI certified that it had fast reset the Apple ID cue of militant Syed Farook’s iPhone 5c, stealing a probability that it could bond to Apple’s servers and perform a uninformed iCloud backup. That backup would have supposing a FBI with additional information that it is now attempting to get from a device itself by forcing Apple to moment a passcode. Though changing a cue amounts to drop of an entrance of investigation, the FBI argues that it needs some-more information than a backup could provide, a matter doubtful by a comparison Apple engineer.

Additional questions have been lifted about how a FBI skeleton to get some-more information than a backup would provide, even if a pass formula is cracked. Some common theories are that Farook was regulating secure messaging apps that he left un-secured on the device, though a FBI has not given specific reasoning.

The email goes on to quote some supporters of Apple’s stance, that Cook says have reached out to Apple by a thousands.

“Over a past week I’ve perceived messages from thousands of people in all 50 states, and a strenuous infancy are essay to voice their clever support,” says Cook. “One email was from a 13-year-old app developer who thanked us for station adult for “all destiny generations.” And a 30-year Army maestro told me, “Like my freedom, we will always cruise my remoteness as a treasure.””

Cook’s minute also mentions specifically, for a initial time, what Apple proposes going forward. Cook says a elect should be shaped to plead how intelligence, record and polite liberties should interact.

He also reiterates that a supervision should redress a final for a iPhone to be unbarred (emphasis ours).

“Apple is a singly American company. It does not feel right to be on a conflicting side of a supervision in a box centering on a freedoms and liberties that supervision is meant to protect.

“Our nation has always been strongest when we come together. We feel a best approach brazen would be for a supervision to repel a final underneath a All Writs Act and, as some in Congress have proposed, form a elect or other row of experts on intelligence, record and polite liberties to plead a implications for law enforcement, inhabitant security, remoteness and personal freedoms. Apple would gladly attend in such an effort.”

Cook ends a minute with a note thanking Apple employees with operative on confidence facilities that strengthen patron data.

Late Sunday, FBI Director James Comey published an op-ed that denied it was seeking for a concept behind doorway and pinned a arguments on a imagery of a victims of a San Bernardino attack. “We simply wish a chance, with a hunt warrant, to try to theory a terrorist’s passcode though a phone radically self-destructing and though it holding a decade to theory correctly. That’s it,” pronounced Comey, hewing closely to a ‘narrow scope’ defense. A invulnerability that has come underneath conflict by some technologists and advocacy groups like a EFF, who trust that a origination of such a apparatus would also concede vectors for it to be appropriated, reverse-engineered by a FBI or others, and re-used many times.

“In a same vein, you’ll also notice that in perfectionist a tool, FBI has sneakily ensured that a some-more “open” duplicate of a program will have to be expelled (that will work on other devices) in sequence for it to be tested, validated, and re-tested by a invulnerability team,” records iPhone confidence researcher Jonathan Zdziarsky. “This guarantees that a hacking apparatus FBI is forcing Apple to write will be out in a public, where it will be in a hands of mixed agencies and private attorneys.”

In a some-more new posting, Zdziarsky also records that this initial sequence by a FBI could be a preliminary to a more expansive sequence that attacks Apple’s efforts to encrypt information on a inclination — or it could simply be a FBI perplexing to redress a foolishness in resetting a Apple ID password.

A couple in Cook’s email also points employees to a new open confronting page that provides a minute QA that answers several questions about Apple’s position and a box during large. One of those, either Apple has unbarred iPhones in a past, is something we have formerly covered. The answer Apple gives: no.

The QA addresses a range evidence as well.

Could Apple build this handling complement usually once, for this iPhone, and never use it again?

The digital universe is really conflicting than a earthy world. In a earthy universe we can destroy something and it’s gone. But in a digital world, once combined a technique could be used over and over again, on any series of devices.

Law coercion agents around a nation have already pronounced they have hundreds of iPhones they wish Apple to clear if a FBI wins this case. In a earthy world, it would be a homogeneous of a master key, means of opening hundreds of millions of locks. Of march Apple would do a best to strengthen that key, though in a universe where all of a information is underneath consistent threat, it would be relentlessly attacked by hackers and cybercriminals. As new attacks on a IRS systems and large other information breaches have shown, no one is defence to cyber attacks.

Again, we strongly trust a usually approach to pledge such a absolute apparatus isn’t abused and doesn’t tumble into a wrong hands is to never emanate it.

There is an whole procession for information requests by a supervision that Apple has summarized in a public-facing document. Apple can no longer mislay information off of iPhones (with correct warrants) as it has in a past given as of iOS 8 all on device is encrypted if there is a passcode set. Apple still offers warrant-based descent of information around iCloud and iCloud backups. This box is conflicting given a supervision wants something wholly outward of a normal scope: for Apple to build a new, weaker chronicle of iOS that allows them to moment an iPhone’s pass code. Security experts we have oral to trust that they aren’t interlude there and will wish decryption collection as well, paving a approach to encryption ‘back doors’ that could be exploited by governments both domestic and unfamiliar and would be during risk of find and mis-use by hackers and other bad actors.

The full content of a email and QA is below.

Subject: Thank we for your support

Team,

Last week we asked a business and people conflicting a United States to join a open discourse about critical issues confronting a country. In a week given that letter, I’ve been beholden for a suspicion and contention we’ve listened and read, as good as a escape of support we’ve perceived from conflicting America.

As people and as a company, we have no toleration or magnetism for terrorists. When they dedicate accursed acts like a comfortless attacks in San Bernardino, we work to assistance a authorities pursue probity for a victims. And that’s accurately what we did.

This box is about many some-more than a singular phone or a singular investigation, so when we perceived a government’s sequence we knew we had to pronounce out. At interest is a information confidence of hundreds of millions of law-abiding people, and environment a dangerous fashion that threatens everyone’s polite liberties.

As we know, we use encryption to strengthen a business — whose information is underneath siege. We work tough to urge confidence with any program recover given a threats are apropos some-more visit and some-more worldly all a time.

Some advocates of a government’s sequence wish us to hurl behind information protections to iOS 7, that we expelled in Sep 2013. Starting with iOS 8, we began encrypting information in a approach that not even a iPhone itself can review though a user’s passcode, so if it is mislaid or stolen, a personal data, conversations, financial and health information are distant some-more secure. We all know that branch behind a time on that swell would be a terrible idea.

Our associate adults know it, too. Over a past week I’ve perceived messages from thousands of people in all 50 states, and a strenuous infancy are essay to voice their clever support. One email was from a 13-year-old app developer who thanked us for station adult for “all destiny generations.” And a 30-year Army maestro told me, “Like my freedom, we will always cruise my remoteness as a treasure.”

I’ve also listened from many of we and we am generally beholden for your support.

Many people still have questions about a box and we wish to make certain they know a facts. So currently we are posting answers on apple.com/customer-letter/answers/ to yield some-more information on this issue. we inspire we to review them.

Apple is a singly American company. It does not feel right to be on a conflicting side of a supervision in a box centering on a freedoms and liberties that supervision is meant to protect.

Our nation has always been strongest when we come together. We feel a best approach brazen would be for a supervision to repel a final underneath a All Writs Act and, as some in Congress have proposed, form a elect or other row of experts on intelligence, record and polite liberties to plead a implications for law enforcement, inhabitant security, remoteness and personal freedoms. Apple would gladly attend in such an effort.

People trust Apple to keep their information safe, and that information is an increasingly critical partial of everyone’s lives. You do an implausible pursuit safeguarding them with a facilities we pattern into a products. Thank you.

Tim

QA:

Why is Apple objecting to a government’s order?

The supervision asked a justice to sequence Apple to emanate a singular chronicle of iOS that would bypass confidence protections on a iPhone’s close screen. It would also supplement a totally new capability so passcode tries could be entered electronically.

This has dual critical and dangerous implications:

First, a supervision would have us write an wholly new operating system for their use. They are seeking Apple to mislay confidence facilities and add a new ability to a handling complement to attack iPhone encryption, allowing a passcode to be submit electronically. This would make it easier to clear an iPhone by “brute force,” perplexing thousands or millions of combinations with a speed of a modern computer.

We built clever confidence into a iPhone given people lift so many personal information on a phones today, and there are new information breaches any week inspiring individuals, companies and governments. The passcode close and requirement for primer entrance of passcode are during a heart of a safeguards we have built in to iOS. It would be wrong to intentionally break a products with a government-ordered backdoor. If we remove control of a data, we put both a remoteness and a reserve during risk.

Second, a sequence would set a authorised fashion that expands a powers of a supervision and we simply don’t know where that would lead us. Should a supervision be authorised to sequence us to create other capabilities for notice purposes, such as recording conversations or plcae tracking? This would set a really dangerous precedent.

Is it technically probable to do what a supervision has ordered?

Yes, it is positively probable to emanate an wholly new handling complement to criticise a confidence facilities as a supervision wants. But it’s something we trust is too dangerous to do. The usually way to pledge such a absolute apparatus isn’t abused and doesn’t tumble into a wrong hands is to never emanate it.

Could Apple build this handling complement usually once, for this iPhone, and never use it again?

The digital universe is really conflicting than a earthy world. In a earthy universe we can destroy something and it’s gone. But in a digital world, once combined a technique could be used over and over again, on any series of devices.

Law coercion agents around a nation have already pronounced they have hundreds of iPhones they wish Apple to clear if a FBI wins this case. In a earthy world, it would be a homogeneous of a master key, means of opening hundreds of millions of locks. Of march Apple would do a best to strengthen that key, though in a universe where all of a information is underneath consistent threat, it would be relentlessly attacked by hackers and cybercriminals. As new attacks on a IRS systems and large other information breaches have shown, no one is defence to cyber attacks.

Again, we strongly trust a usually approach to pledge such a absolute apparatus isn’t abused and doesn’t tumble into a wrong hands is to never emanate it.

Has Apple unbarred iPhones for law coercion in a past?

No.

We frequently accept law coercion requests for information about a business and their Apple devices. In fact, we have a dedicated group that responds to these requests 24/7. We also provide guidelines on a website for law coercion agencies so they know accurately what we are means to entrance and what authorised management we need to see before we can assistance them.

For inclination regulating a iPhone handling systems before to iOS 8, and underneath a lawful court order, we have extracted data from an iPhone.

We’ve built gradually stronger protections into a products with any new program release, including passcode-based information encryption, because cyberattacks have usually turn some-more frequent and some-more sophisticated. As a outcome of these stronger protections that requires information encryption, we are no longer means to use a information descent routine on iPhones regulating iOS 8 or later.

Hackers and cybercriminals are always looking for new ways to better a security, that is because we keep creation it stronger.

The supervision says your objection appears to be formed on regard for your business indication and selling strategy. Is that true?

Absolutely not. Nothing could be serve from a truth. This is and always has been about a customers. We feel strongly that if we were to do what a supervision has asked of us —  to emanate a backdoor to a products — not usually is it unlawful, though it puts a immeasurable infancy of good and law abiding citizens, who rest on iPhone to strengthen their many personal and critical data, during risk.

Is there any other approach we can assistance a FBI?

We have finished all that’s both within a energy and within a law to assistance in this case. As we’ve said, we have no magnetism for terrorists.

We supposing all of a information about a phone that we possessed. In addition, we proactively offering recommendation on receiving additional information. Even given a government’s sequence was issued, we are providing additional suggestions after training new information from a Justice Department’s filings.

One of a strongest suggestions we offered was that they span a phone to a formerly assimilated network that would concede them to fill-in a phone and get a information they are now seeking for. Unfortunately, we schooled that while the attacker’s iPhone was in FBI control a Apple ID cue compared with a phone was changed. Changing this password meant a phone could no longer entrance iCloud services.

As a supervision has confirmed, we’ve handed over all a information we have, including a backup of a iPhone in question. But now they have asked us for information we simply do not have.

What should occur from here?

Our nation has always been strongest when we come together. We feel a best approach brazen would be for a supervision to repel a final underneath a All Writs Act and, as some in Congress have proposed, form a elect or other row of experts on intelligence, record and polite liberties to plead a implications for law enforcement, inhabitant security, remoteness and personal freedoms. Apple would gladly attend in such an effort.

Apple vs FBI

Featured Image: Stephen Lam/Getty Images

About the Author

Leave a comment

XHTML: You can use these html tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>