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Old 06-14-2018, 06:55 AM
aldiboronti aldiboronti is offline
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Is Apple really providing cover for criminals by this new option?

The reported option is to lock data USB access on iPhones and the cops are pissed.

Quote:
Tech giant Apple is reportedly planning to prevent anyone who wants to gain access to a encrypted iOS device via techniques like Cellebriteís GrayKey phone-hacking box by introducing an option to lock USB data access an hour after itís locked, essentially turning iPhones, iPads, and iPods into sealed black boxes. Officials in the law enforcement community, which has been scaremongering about Appleís encryption technology for years over the objections of actual tech experts, arenít happy about it.

In fact, per an article in the New York Times rehashing the plan, police seem pretty steamed about the matter, such as this Indiana state investigator who works on internet child abuse:

ďIf we go back to the situation where we again donít have access, now we know directly all the evidence weíve lost and all the kids we canít put into a position of safety,Ē said Chuck Cohen, who leads an Indiana State Police task force on internet crimes against children. The Indiana State Police said it unlocked 96 iPhones for various cases this year, each time with a warrant, using a $15,000 device it bought in March from a company called Grayshift.
Leaving kids in the hands of pedophiles? Is this the usual alarmist stuff from law enforcement angered at losing a way to spy on people or is there something to it?
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Old 06-14-2018, 08:25 AM
JRDelirious JRDelirious is offline
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Originally Posted by aldiboronti View Post
Leaving kids in the hands of pedophiles? Is this the usual alarmist stuff from law enforcement angered at losing a way to spy on people
Interesting that official went right for the Nuclear Option of scaremongering up front; I suppose that there are no recent cases in Indiana of "Terrorist Radical" suspects' iPhones to trot out (Evidently he felt that mere drug dealers would not rile up the masses.)

I don't doubt that LEOs are frustrated at their job getting harder. But that just is how things go under our constitutional system.

"Backdooring" is making devices and systems insecure. I am repeatedly told about maintaining cyersecurity and not allowing third party access to the devices. My employment phone is an iPhone precisely because of security concerns. Of course, since it is the employer's phone I agreed that THEY will have the access to the encryption. But that does not mean an outsider, even in a LEA should have access to it and I'd probably be between a rock and a hard place if other authorities wanted a look at it.
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Old 06-14-2018, 08:42 AM
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I have mixed feelings about this. By law, if law enforcement has the proper authorization (warrant), they have the right to search. This new function seems to override the law. Is it even legal if challenged?

Question: iPhones are automatically backed up to the cloud every night unless you make an effort to stop it. Couldn't they access your data that way? They wouldn't actually have to access your physical device.
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Old 06-14-2018, 08:55 AM
JRDelirious JRDelirious is offline
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Originally Posted by Jasmine View Post
I have mixed feelings about this. By law, if law enforcement has the proper authorization (warrant), they have the right to search. This new function seems to override the law. Is it even legal if challenged?

.

Why would it be illegal? It’s a security feature that incidentally makes it impossible to use one particular form of access that hasbeen deemed a hazard. Is it illegal for me to eliminate my home’s back door and wall it up with concrete?
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Old 06-14-2018, 09:28 AM
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Originally Posted by aldiboronti View Post
The reported option is to lock data USB access on iPhones and the cops are pissed.



Leaving kids in the hands of pedophiles? Is this the usual alarmist stuff from law enforcement angered at losing a way to spy on people or is there something to it?
I'm sure they are pissed. They invested time and money into a method to hack those phones and now it's seemingly been superseded. Bummer, man.

Of course this is the usual alarmist stuff...they want to spark outrage to try and put pressure on the vendor to change and put in a backdoor they could use to break in to the devices if they want/need too. The trouble is that when this came up the last time it hurt Apple, even though Apple didn't cooperate. But the highly publicized 'we broke in on our own anyway' schtick just pissed Apple off as well as bringing up questions from their users. So, Apple did the logical thing and worked the problem to close the backdoor.

I suppose we have a choice. Either we become what China is, where the CCP has forced manufacturers to put in not just backdoors but front doors that give them access to all of the data or we don't. Because if you are going to allow the barn door to open a little bit it's going to eventually be pushed all the way, IMHO. This IS a slippery slope, and once you force companies to start down this path there will always be something else you need access to in order to protect the children from terrorist pedophiles....
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Old 06-14-2018, 09:41 AM
Steve MB Steve MB is online now
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Originally Posted by JRDelirious View Post
Interesting that official went right for the Nuclear Option of scaremongering up front
You'd think they'd have the sense to cool it for a while after the dinosaur-sized egg they just got on their faces:

Quote:
FBI Admits It's Been Using A Highly-Inflated Number Of Locked Devices To Push Its 'Going Dark' Narrative

Call it a lie. Call it a misrepresentation. Call it a convenient error. Call it what you want. Just don't call it a fact. Devlin Barrett at the Washington Post delivers a bombshell: the thousands of phones the FBI supposedly just can't crack despite a wealth of tech solutions at its disposal? It's nowhere near as many as consecutive FBI directors have claimed....
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Originally Posted by Jasmine View Post
I have mixed feelings about this. By law, if law enforcement has the proper authorization (warrant), they have the right to search.
Under certain conditions, they have authorization (governments don't have "rights") to search. "Search" means "try to find something", whether or not anything is actually found or even possible to find.

Quote:
This new function seems to override the law.
Nonsense. By this bizarre "logic", tearing up old receipts and using them to kindle a barbecue "overrides the law" because it makes them inaccessible to future search.
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Old 06-14-2018, 09:55 AM
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Originally Posted by Jasmine View Post
Question: iPhones are automatically backed up to the cloud every night unless you make an effort to stop it. Couldn't they access your data that way?
Yes; Apple routinely cooperates with such requests when presented with legitimate authorization via warrant.

Interestingly, this option was foreclosed by the FBI itself in the most notorious recent locked-phone case:

Quote:
The San Bernardino County government on Friday night said the FBI told its staff to tamper with the Apple account of Syed Farook, who with his wife, Tashfeen Malik, carried out the December shooting in which 14 people were killed.

The development matters because the change made to the account -- a reset of Farook’s iCloud password -- made it impossible to see if there was another way to get access to data on the shooter’s iPhone without taking Apple to court....
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Old 06-14-2018, 10:01 AM
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Originally Posted by aldiboronti View Post
The reported option is to lock data USB access on iPhones and the cops are pissed.



Leaving kids in the hands of pedophiles? Is this the usual alarmist stuff from law enforcement angered at losing a way to spy on people or is there something to it?
Any exploit law enforcement could use, a hacker (or an overreaching government) could use against an innocent person. For that reason, I say lock the phones up tight. If you could magically guarantee that only criminal's phones (e.g. pedophiles, terrorists) would be subject to these exploits, I could get behind that. But they can't, so I won't.
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Old 06-14-2018, 10:32 AM
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I'm generally one who is concerned about the impact of not getting evidence to stop terrorist attacks or lock up dangerous criminals because of the security of communications going up over time.

But, several important points:
1. Trying to stop this technological change is pointless. It will not work.
2. Apple and others are not doing anything wrong by doing this. Yes, it may make it harder to convict some really bad people, but see point number one.
3. I generally have a more expansive view that if Apple or someone else is ordered by a court to do something that will help authorities obtain information in accordance with a lawful warrant, they can be compelled to do so.
4. Relating to 3, we should not think of security technology as being any more immune from the law and the jurisdiction of courts as any physical security device. If the authorities can legally search your house, they can legally search your phone... if it is physically capable of doing so. Just because a person may have a high degree of expectation of privacy on what's on their phone, does not mean that a warrant to search it is somehow "bad." But it could be the case that police just can't get access to the phone, see points 1 and 2 again.
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Old 06-14-2018, 11:10 AM
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Originally Posted by Ravenman View Post
I'm generally one who is concerned about the impact of not getting evidence to stop terrorist attacks or lock up dangerous criminals because of the security of communications going up over time.

But, several important points:
1. Trying to stop this technological change is pointless. It will not work.
2. Apple and others are not doing anything wrong by doing this. Yes, it may make it harder to convict some really bad people, but see point number one.
3. I generally have a more expansive view that if Apple or someone else is ordered by a court to do something that will help authorities obtain information in accordance with a lawful warrant, they can be compelled to do so.
4. Relating to 3, we should not think of security technology as being any more immune from the law and the jurisdiction of courts as any physical security device. If the authorities can legally search your house, they can legally search your phone... if it is physically capable of doing so. Just because a person may have a high degree of expectation of privacy on what's on their phone, does not mean that a warrant to search it is somehow "bad." But it could be the case that police just can't get access to the phone, see points 1 and 2 again.
I was going to touch on the first one, but I'm trying to shorten my posts lately so figured I'd let it go. But it's a good catch. There is no way to put this genie back in the bottle, and there are a lot of options available today to encrypt your data in ways that would make it impossible for the government to get at it (or make it so expensive and painful that it's not worth it for the government to devote the resources to do it). As you say, Apple has done nothing wrong in any of this.
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Old 06-14-2018, 12:26 PM
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Originally Posted by Jasmine View Post
Question: iPhones are automatically backed up to the cloud every night unless you make an effort to stop it. Couldn't they access your data that way? They wouldn't actually have to access your physical device.
That depends. My understanding is that your data in the iCloud is encrypted, but you can also choose to back up your encryption keys, in which case Apple can then decrypt your iCloud info. If you don't backup your keys, then even Apple can't read it.

This is what happened to Paul Manafort recently with the charges of witness tampering - the FBI was able to get his phone data from Apple because he backed up his keys.
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Old 06-14-2018, 12:50 PM
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I trust Apple way more than I trust "the government". Thanks, Apple!
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Old 06-14-2018, 01:01 PM
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I trust Apple way more than I trust "the government". Thanks, Apple!
On a tangent, I've noticed that past few years that there have been some news stories out of Europe that sound perplexing to an American, but can be explained by the fact that in America, most of us tend to trust Apple and Google but distrust the government, while in Europe it's the other way around. They trust their governments with their data but not corporations.
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Old 06-14-2018, 01:10 PM
D_Odds D_Odds is offline
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Is it illegal for me to eliminate my homeís back door and wall it up with concrete?
"Illegal" might not be the right term 100% of the time, but depending on one's jurisdiction, it might be against safety codes.
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Old 06-14-2018, 01:46 PM
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I trust Apple way more than I trust "the government". Thanks, Apple!
I see it differently. Apple is actively trying to exploit the data they gain about me, to make money off of me. Yeah, I'm just one blip among many millions of customers, but they (and Facebook, Google, etc) are squeezing this one blip for all it is worth.

To the Government, to the extent that they have data about me, is under various restrictions on how it can be used; but for the most point, I am noise to them. I'm the very definition of the data points they seek to filter out... so why should I care?

YMMV, of course.
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Old 06-14-2018, 02:35 PM
DavidwithanR DavidwithanR is offline
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Some people (in various positions) seem to be thinking in terms of older, breakable security being replaced by a new unbreakable kind. That's never true.

Every form of security is breakable, in practice not just in theory. Some take more time or resources, but still.
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Old 06-14-2018, 02:59 PM
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Every form of security is breakable, in practice not just in theory. Some take more time or resources, but still.
Sure. One man can build the pyramids. It just takes longer.
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Old 06-14-2018, 05:51 PM
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In analysing security situations, it's always useful to flip the good-guy/bad-guy roles about a bit and see what difference that makes to your thinking.

So:

- Honorable US LEOs in the anti-child-porn squad versus some skeevy people swapping obscene pics of under-twelves ... sure we want the law to have all the data it needs to it can put them away quickly.

- Now lets suppose we're in Cuba and the people whose phones the cops want access to are democracy advocates planning peaceful demonstrations and leafletting. Do we still want to let the authorities backdoor that information?
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Old 06-14-2018, 05:54 PM
JRDelirious JRDelirious is offline
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And I’m fine with the security taking longer to break. Heck if there is the warrant, go to town looking for how to break through.

But this point I no longer trust that the various safeguards on government action will be respected any more than I trust corporations to deal ethically rather than profitably. Agencies keep looking for ways to not need to wait for the warrant, and instead be able to search just on the spot. Something that enables authorities to search at will makes it possible for the malicious to compromise the device at will.
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Old 06-14-2018, 06:18 PM
DavidwithanR DavidwithanR is offline
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...

But this point I no longer trust that the various safeguards on government action will be respected any more than I trust corporations to deal ethically rather than profitably. Agencies keep looking for ways to not need to wait for the warrant, and instead be able to search just on the spot.
It confuses me that there are so many people concerned about this and who are at the same time voting for governments that promise the opposite. Not you personally - just if people want a government that protects privacy and enforces the need for warrants, they should try electing one first, instead of electing the opposite and then not liking it.
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Old 06-14-2018, 07:22 PM
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In analysing security situations, it's always useful to flip the good-guy/bad-guy roles about a bit and see what difference that makes to your thinking.

So:

- Honorable US LEOs in the anti-child-porn squad versus some skeevy people swapping obscene pics of under-twelves ... sure we want the law to have all the data it needs to it can put them away quickly.

- Now lets suppose we're in Cuba and the people whose phones the cops want access to are democracy advocates planning peaceful demonstrations and leafletting. Do we still want to let the authorities backdoor that information?
Forget the idea of searching a phone. The same principle must apply to arrests, right?

So if youíre okay with US officials arresting child molesters... youíre saying we have to be okay with Cuban police arresting peaceful protesters?

Or, are you saying that because Cuba shouldnít arrest people for having democratic views, that US police should let child molesters go free?

Either way, I hope you recognize how poor your question is.
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Old 06-14-2018, 07:34 PM
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I see it differently. Apple is actively trying to exploit the data they gain about me, to make money off of me. Yeah, I'm just one blip among many millions of customers, but they (and Facebook, Google, etc) are squeezing this one blip for all it is worth.
You're right about Facebook and Google, of course, but how exactly is Apple actively exploiting and squeezing your user data for money?
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Old 06-14-2018, 07:55 PM
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You're right about Facebook and Google, of course, but how exactly is Apple actively exploiting and squeezing your user data for money?
Fair point. I assume that they are. I donít know that for a fact.
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Old 06-14-2018, 09:20 PM
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Forget the idea of searching a phone. The same principle must apply to arrests, right?

So if youíre okay with US officials arresting child molesters... youíre saying we have to be okay with Cuban police arresting peaceful protesters?

Or, are you saying that because Cuba shouldnít arrest people for having democratic views, that US police should let child molesters go free?

Either way, I hope you recognize how poor your question is.
Read the article. It's talking about Apple making it harder, or hopefully impossible, for people to use an existing piece of hardware that cost less than 20,000 dollars, to unlock any iPhone they like, without asking anyone's permission.

Do you have a plan for how to ensure these devices are only going to be available to responsible police forces?
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Old 06-14-2018, 09:47 PM
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Police acting within fair laws should be free to gather evidence to help prosecute crimes to the best of their capabilities. Thereís literally nothing inherently wrong with searching a phone, but like any government power, it can be used by the book or an oppressive manner.

The fact that literally every government power can be abused isnít a reason for the government to have no power.

Youíve offered two really poor arguments. Iíd urge you to sharpen up any subsequent ones.
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Old 06-14-2018, 09:53 PM
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You’ve offered two really poor arguments.
I'm still trying to figure out how anything you said suggests, much less establishes, the alleged "poorness" of the argument "The existing security hole can be abused by anyone -- cop, crook, hacker, foreign agent, anyone at all -- who gets hold of one of these cracking devices".
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Old 06-14-2018, 09:56 PM
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Fair point. I assume that they are. I donít know that for a fact.
Why on earth would you assume any such thing when the whole topic of discussion is a security system designed to insure that nobody other than the phone owner, including Apple, can access the phone contents?
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Old 06-14-2018, 09:59 PM
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I'm still trying to figure out how anything you said suggests, much less establishes, the alleged "poorness" of the argument "The existing security hole can be abused by anyone -- cop, crook, hacker, foreign agent, anyone at all -- who gets hold of one of these cracking devices".
There’s three reasons I can think of for someone to ask that question:

One, they may believe that I said Apple is doing something wrong by tightening its security. That is literally the opposite of what I wrote in post 9, so that’s clearly not my position.

Two, there’s something special about electronics that should make them treated differently by the law, so that a search of digital device is subjected to a higher threshold of scrutiny. I think that’s silly.

Three, folks are trying to make the argument that if repressive countries engage in activity X (jailing people, conducting searches, etc) then free countries should not do those things either. That too is patently absurd.

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Old 06-14-2018, 10:02 PM
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Why on earth would you assume any such thing when the whole topic of discussion is a security system designed to insure that nobody other than the phone owner, including Apple, can access the phone contents?
Because I see no reason to trust Apple. Iím sure they are collecting information from their customers, and though it may not be content of messages, I have no reason to believe that Apple users arenít monitored in some way that makes Apple money. But I donít know how this works, Iím open to correction, and Iím just stating that Iím not asserting my assumptions as facts.
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Old 06-14-2018, 10:37 PM
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If I don't have an iPhone, you have nothing to search. If I have an encrypted iPhone, you still have nothing to search. Same difference.
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Old 06-14-2018, 10:40 PM
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If I don't have an iPhone, you have nothing to search. If I have an encrypted iPhone, you still have nothing to search. Same difference.
Apple collects no data from its products?
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Old 06-14-2018, 11:11 PM
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Iím sure they are collecting information from their customers, and though it may not be content of messages, I have no reason to believe that Apple users arenít monitored in some way that makes Apple money. But I donít know how this works, Iím open to correction, and Iím just stating that Iím not asserting my assumptions as facts.
Apple does not monetize their customers' data to any significant degree. You can stop assuming that.
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Old 06-15-2018, 03:31 AM
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It's providing cover for people who care about their privacy and who don't want anyone to access their materials. Some of those people are criminals; many are not. Many of those criminals may well be doing nothing morally wrong, such as people who just wanna buy weed or the aforementioned democracy activists in Cuba. More privacy inherently means a harder time for people to see what you're doing, and sometimes criminals will take advantage of that. It doesn't make "more privacy" inherently a bad thing. I mean, the cops would have it easier if they opened and read every piece of everyone's mail. But we have laws against that for a reason.
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Old 06-15-2018, 03:45 AM
DavidwithanR DavidwithanR is offline
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You're right about Facebook and Google, of course, but how exactly is Apple actively exploiting and squeezing your user data for money?
Why would actively vs passively make any difference? Passively is just as bad in this context.

The same way all companies exploit your user data for money: more effective and more targeted marketing.

First clue: If they weren't doing that, then Apple products wouldn't have registrations or accounts built in.
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Old 06-15-2018, 05:12 AM
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Why would actively vs passively make any difference? Passively is just as bad in this context.
Ask Ravenman, he said actively.

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Originally Posted by DavidwithanR View Post
The same way all companies exploit your user data for money: more effective and more targeted marketing.

First clue: If they weren't doing that, then Apple products wouldn't have registrations or accounts built in.
What, you mean like voluntary registration cards? You think Apple had a quarter trillion dollars in revenue last year based off mining the data from registration cards?

Assuming you when you say "accounts" you're referring to your Apple ID, Apple doesn't really use that to gather marketing data, certainly not to the extent your Google or Facebook accounts do. As an example, even Apple's own Siri doesn't send your Apple ID when you use it to make a query.
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Old 06-15-2018, 05:17 AM
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On a tangent, I've noticed that past few years that there have been some news stories out of Europe ...They trust their governments with their data but not corporations.
Interesting. Hereabouts we trust neither. Or rather, we distrust both equally.
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Old 06-15-2018, 06:58 AM
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Apple does not monetize their customers' data to any significant degree. You can stop assuming that.
Ok, good enough for me. So then I amend my earlier statements to read that I have more concern about how Google and Facebook deal with my privacy than I do with how Apple and the Government deal with my privacy.
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Old 06-15-2018, 09:23 AM
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I have mixed feelings about this. By law, if law enforcement has the proper authorization (warrant), they have the right to search. This new function seems to override the law. Is it even legal if challenged?

Question: iPhones are automatically backed up to the cloud every night unless you make an effort to stop it. Couldn't they access your data that way? They wouldn't actually have to access your physical device.
Perhaps we should give the coppers a key to our homes in case they secure a warrant.

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Old 06-15-2018, 09:47 AM
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Originally Posted by Quartz View Post
Interesting. Hereabouts we trust neither. Or rather, we distrust both equally.
You guys trust the NHS to use and distribute correctly personal data that in the US is treated as if it was radioactive. "The government" doesn't mean every branch of it.
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  #40  
Old 06-15-2018, 09:53 AM
k9bfriender k9bfriender is offline
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Originally Posted by DavidwithanR View Post
Why would actively vs passively make any difference? Passively is just as bad in this context.

The same way all companies exploit your user data for money: more effective and more targeted marketing.

First clue: If they weren't doing that, then Apple products wouldn't have registrations or accounts built in.
What they do with the information that you have given them to register your account is one thing. They may send you offers of phones or plans.

It is if they are mining your personal data, information from your phone, your communications, or your browsing history, that privacy concerns are a bit more important.
  #41  
Old 06-15-2018, 11:29 AM
Really Not All That Bright Really Not All That Bright is offline
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Perhaps we should give the coppers a key to our homes in case they secure a warrant.
I don't fully understand the tech implications, but I think what's being discussed is analogous to getting rid of one's own key in case a court later orders you to give it to the police.
  #42  
Old 06-15-2018, 12:09 PM
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I don't fully understand the tech implications, but I think what's being discussed is analogous to getting rid of one's own key in case a court later orders you to give it to the police.
Actually, what the various police agencies are advocating is some designed-in access system (i.e. analogous to providing them a master key). We already have the option of ordering a particular investigation target to fork over records in response to a warrant, and to hold the target in contempt if he tries to evade the requirement by presenting the documents in unreadable form.
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  #43  
Old 06-15-2018, 12:20 PM
k9bfriender k9bfriender is offline
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I don't fully understand the tech implications, but I think what's being discussed is analogous to getting rid of one's own key in case a court later orders you to give it to the police.
It's more analogous to the police having made a master key for all the apartments in your building. That master key is not only accessible to them, but is potentially accessible to people with less noble motives, and the very existence of it means that others may try to create their own master key.

Then the police get mad at you because you changed your locks.
  #44  
Old 06-15-2018, 01:57 PM
begbert2 begbert2 is offline
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Can I ask what is likely a really, really stupid question?

If the police knock on your door and wave a warrant, do you have to let them in? What crimes are you committing if you refuse?

Because this locking of the phones is exactly equivalent to slamming the door in the cop's face and throwing the bolt. Apple tightening the security is exactly equivalent to fortifying your door with steel so their battering rams don't work anymore.

But there's one difference - you can't hide from the police inside your phone. They can still arrest you, try you, and prosecute you - presuming that by refusing to open your 'door' for them you have committed a crime.

Rather than attempting to fight technology itself, wouldn't a more correct approach be for the police to get the legislators to just raise the legal penalties for refusing to open your phone when they order you to?
  #45  
Old 06-15-2018, 02:14 PM
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There is an uncertainty in the law regarding someoneís obligations to assist police with the search of encrypted electronic devices. The general view of courts is that if you have a physical key to a physical safe, the Constitution allows authorities, under proper judicial oversight, to compel you to provide the key.

However, the right against self-incrimination at this point is viewed as protecting things in ones mind, including passwords.

So while encryption may be like a steel bar on a door, it is not actually such a thing. Therefore the law applies differently to things unlocked by a physical key as compared to things unlocked by oneís mind.

It is actually an excellent question, and the law on this is rather new.
  #46  
Old 06-15-2018, 02:20 PM
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Originally Posted by Ravenman View Post
There is an uncertainty in the law regarding someoneís obligations to assist police with the search of encrypted electronic devices. The general view of courts is that if you have a physical key to a physical safe, the Constitution allows authorities, under proper judicial oversight, to compel you to provide the key.

However, the right against self-incrimination at this point is viewed as protecting things in ones mind, including passwords.

So while encryption may be like a steel bar on a door, it is not actually such a thing. Therefore the law applies differently to things unlocked by a physical key as compared to things unlocked by oneís mind.

It is actually an excellent question, and the law on this is rather new.
So presumably if you have a combination to a physical safe, you aren't required to provide it and police have been stymied by this for decades. (Or they just busted out a drill or something.) Right?
  #47  
Old 06-15-2018, 02:29 PM
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So presumably if you have a combination to a physical safe, you aren't required to provide it and police have been stymied by this for decades. (Or they just busted out a drill or something.) Right?
To the best of my knowledge, the law isn't 100% settled on that, but seems to lean a long way toward favoring the subject of the search warrant. ETA: but the difference is of course that the police can brute force the safe, but brute forcing encryption is much more challenging.

http://blogs.denverpost.com/crime/20...on-safes/3343/

Last edited by Ravenman; 06-15-2018 at 02:30 PM.
  #48  
Old 06-15-2018, 02:40 PM
k9bfriender k9bfriender is offline
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Originally Posted by begbert2 View Post
Can I ask what is likely a really, really stupid question?

If the police knock on your door and wave a warrant, do you have to let them in? What crimes are you committing if you refuse?

Because this locking of the phones is exactly equivalent to slamming the door in the cop's face and throwing the bolt. Apple tightening the security is exactly equivalent to fortifying your door with steel so their battering rams don't work anymore.

But there's one difference - you can't hide from the police inside your phone. They can still arrest you, try you, and prosecute you - presuming that by refusing to open your 'door' for them you have committed a crime.

Rather than attempting to fight technology itself, wouldn't a more correct approach be for the police to get the legislators to just raise the legal penalties for refusing to open your phone when they order you to?
I'd say that locking the phones is like locking your door. It keeps everyone out, including the police. Apple tightening the security is like having your home fortified to keep out thieves, snoops, overly curious friends, as well as the police. That you can lock your door in a cop's face isn't an argument for getting rid of locks.

Is it the legislature that levies the penalties for contempt of court? I would think that the court has fairly wide latitude when it comes to compelling actions. But, if what is on my phone is something that implicates me in a serious felony, it would be hard to come up with a penalty that would get me to unlock my phone for the court.
  #49  
Old 06-15-2018, 02:57 PM
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Whack-a-Mole Whack-a-Mole is offline
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But, if what is on my phone is something that implicates me in a serious felony, it would be hard to come up with a penalty that would get me to unlock my phone for the court.
How about jail for the rest of your life?

IIRC the court once jailed a man for refusing to divulge where he hid money that was owed to his ex-wife. So the court put him in jail and there he got to stay till he decided to get the money he owed. Last I heard he was still in jail after 12+ years.

We have discussed this around here before and I think the legal eagles said the court can do this because you hold the keys to your own release. Do what the court has asked and you are free to go (for the contempt charge at least).

So, sit in jail forever or unlock your phone? What is on your phone would have to be really bad in that case to refuse to unlock it.
  #50  
Old 06-15-2018, 03:23 PM
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Buck Godot Buck Godot is offline
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I don't have a problem in principal with the government having tools to extract information from a phone with a warrant.

The problem I see is two fold
1) If there is a back door, that is given to law enforcement it is only a short matter of time before some nefarious person also has this back door.
2) If you are the sort of person who keeps child pornography or terrorist plots on your phone, you are probably motivated enough to obtain 3rd party encryption software off the web that will basically do the same thing. Writing an encryption app is something any halfway decent CS undergrad could do, so you can't really keep the genii in the bottle.

Last edited by Buck Godot; 06-15-2018 at 03:25 PM.
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