Right to Privacy is In the Center Of Debate Again, As Apple Tries To Make iPhone More Secure

The Recent shooting in San Bernardino lead FBI to ask Apple that they let them backdoor entrance to one of the suspect’s iPhone. Tim Cook, CEO of Apple protested the order in a letter he wrote. That lead to one of many fights between government and tech companies over government’s right to ask for private data stored in the servers of those companies. But, unlike a couple of times before, Apple stood by its decision and now the company is trying to make iPhones and its iCloud cloud storage service even more secure.

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They basically want to prevent using recovery mode on iPhone without entering a passcode in their future iPhone models. And what that means? Well, FBI wants for Apple to make them a custom firmware that would let the FBI access to the iPhone of one of the suspects by giving them as many tries to break the passcode as they need. Apple refused to do that and is now thinking about making that option technically impossible by adding additional security measures and limiting, even disabling the DFU mode.

DFU mode stands for device firmware update mode, it is used when your iOS get seriously broken and there’s no way of booting it anymore. Then Apple lets you boot your phone into DFU mode so that you can install a fresh system, and use your phone again. And that’s what the FBI wants, they want for Apple to allow them to hack the suspect’s phone by using a custom firmware made by Apple.

But, the trick is that if you need a password to enter DFU mode, the FBI can’t force Apple to give them backdoor entry by giving them a special firmware that would allow them to attempt as many passwords as they need because the phone would lock after a certain number of tries. In order to make this full proof, Apple needs to make some changes to iCloud, because while data on iCloud’s servers is encrypted, Apple still owns decryption keys so in the case of government asking them to give away iCloud backups, they must comply because they own decryption keys.

To counter that, Apple is thinking of giving every user a unique private key so that company can’t decrypt data on its servers because users will own the passkeys. In the case of losing or forgetting the key the users won’t be able to access their data, but looking at recent events, that’s a small pay for having your privacy secure.

This is great news, knowing that there are big tech companies (even if it’s Apple) that still want to protect their users and let them keep their privacy for themselves. With the release of Blackphone, the phone that gives you complete control over your privacy, and Signal, a messaging app that used complex decryption algorithms in order to keep your chats safe, secure and for your eyes only, a hope for keeping your privacy away from everyone else is rising again. Now it’s time for users to make their move. Will they continue to share their life with the whole internet, or will they learn how to respect their privacy and start caring about it?

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