Recent reports by the New York Times and the FT seem to indicate that Apple is trying to make it even harder to get into an iPhone that is secured and doesn’t belong to you, despite over 51% americans asking it to give in to the FBI in case of the Bernardino terrorist.
This new development comes more like a dramatic Apple move in a tricky game of chess it i playing with the US government. The government wants Apple to help the FBI create a backdoor to an iPhone and the Cupertino giant is doing everything to resist.
The web is at buzz for more than a week now after Apple was ordered by a court to help the FBI crack into an iPhone 5c belonging to a suspect of the San Bernardino terrorist attack. Following which, the tech giant openly denied providing any sort of help in creating a back door to the smartphone. In fact, the company’s CEO Tim Cook himself wrote an open letter to his customers stating what the government wants Apple to do, why they are refusing to do it and in case they agreed, what the consequences would be.
The company, henceforth, received huge support from all over the world but there were still a few who thought that Apple was making the wrong move. The biggest name among them was of Bill Gates who backed the government in this predicament.
Apple has since been trying to put up every security measure possible on to its devices in an attempt to keep the FBI away from finding a master key to open any iDevice.
Just today, reports have arisen that state that Apple is tightening up security even further. A report by The New York Times states that Apple is planning to get rid of a passcode-free recovery mode in future iPhones.
Currently, each iPhone comes with a device firmware update (DFU) mode. The DFU mode’s main purpose was for troubleshooting. In case your iPhone breaks down completely (software-wise), Apple lets you boot your iPhone into DFU mode so that you can reinstall a fresh version of iOS without having to boot iOS or enter a passcode.
While it’s great when you’re desperate to get your smartphone repaired, it’s also one of the most attractive features for jailbreakers and hackers. Using this mode, any ‘knowing’ person could install a special version of iOS to bypass some of Apple’s features.
The DFU mode is something the FBI has been eyeing for a while now as it shows them a crack in the lock which Apple is saying cannot be opened. Getting rid of the passcode-free mode would mean that no one except the owner can access this mode.
That’s not all, according to another report by The FT, Apple is planning to secure iCloud too. Currently data stored over Apple’s cloud storage is secured by a pin that only Apple has access to. The company now wants to change its policy and make the pin available only to the account holder. Though there are a few drawbacks to this approach, like permanently being locked out in case someone forgets their code, Apple still thinks, this is the best way to solve the security crisis.