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Reuters: Apple abandons iCloud backup encryption due to FBI pressure

14.02.2020 0 Comments

Reuters: Apple abandons iCloud backup encryption due to FBI pressure


In February 2016, a conflict occurred between Apple and the FBI, which resulted in public accusations of the company not wanting to help unlock the iPhone in the San Bernardino massacre case. Then Apple said that the confidentiality of user data is a priority for it. But as it turned out, data backups in iCloud do not use end-to-end encryption. This greatly facilitates the task of law enforcement agencies, since they do not even need access to a smartphone. According to Reuters, the company abandoned plans to allow users to encrypt their files in iCloud after repeated complaints by the FBI.

Apple has long boasted that it always defends user privacy, even deployed a huge banner ad near the CES exhibition center in Las Vegas, which read: "Everything that happens on your iPhone remains on your iPhone." The new protection system was supposed to help users protect their files from intruders. After its implementation, the company would not be able to control the data that is uploaded to iCloud. Accordingly, I could not pass them on to third parties. But at one point, Apple refused to encrypt backups in the cloud because of the risk of losing users access to their files.


Some sources claim that it was the FBI who opposed data encryption in iCloud, and Apple simply decided not to “tease the bear” anymore. According to Reuters, in the first half of last year, Apple gave law enforcement agencies full backups of approximately 6,000 devices, satisfying 1,568 requests. In the second half of 2018, US intelligence agencies had data from more than 14,000 user accounts.

Source: Reuters


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