Thursday, February 25, 2016

Potential alternatives for Apple

If the court order for Apple to build a backdoor for the San Bernandino shooter's phone is upheld, Apple has options.

Option 1:
Apple will be asked to build a backdoor to help the FBI compromise its own software.  Per the court order, this software image can be restricted to a single phone, meaning that the FBI can't test it on another phone first.  It's not inconceivable that the software image might have some unforeseen bugs.  Maybe one that does indeed erase the keying material?  Just saying.

Of course this "oops, we didn't mean to have a bug" will only work once.  After that, Apple might be forced to digitally sign FBI developed software under court order.  Who knows.  But it would certainly be interesting to see what the FBI does next if the software doesn't work as the FBI has planned.

Option 2:
Being a service connected disabled vet with a prior traumatic brain injury, I can be clumsy from time to time.  Students have all seen me trip over those damn projector screen feet.  It's like I can't help myself.  Having said that, I'd like to let Apple know that my friends call me Jake "Never Drop Anything" Williams.  In fact, I might even be better known by that name than MalwareJake.  I'd like to offer my services as a highly skilled mobile device forensics technician to Apple.  I like protecting our fundamental freedoms, they want to comply with the court order. Well, you get the picture.  Nothing could go wrong if you let me install the new software image on the suspect phone.

Even if Apple decides it wants to comply, a single rogue employee can fundamentally take the law into their own hands.  Of course, they'll likely be charged for this caper.  But I'm betting they'll have a great legal defense fund.

Blatant Disclaimer
Everything above is just an intellectual exercise.  I'm not seriously suggesting that Apple should intentionally create defective/damaging software - an action that would leave it in contempt of court.  I'm also not seriously saying I'd break a phone if it were in my possession.  And I'm not suggesting that anyone else do it.  I do however think it is an interesting thought exercise to consider some of the less than legal alternatives at Apple's disposal if they lose the court battle with the FBI.

1 comment:

  1. Have used Kaspersky protection for a number of years now, and I'd recommend this solution to all you.


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