The security features of Apple software has been in the news even more than usual, lately. The FBI had previously attempted to push Apple into giving it access to information in San Bernadino shooter Syed Rizwan Farook’s iPhone following the December 2, 2015 terrorist attack that left 14 dead, 22 injured.
Refusing to violate user privacy under what they considered a slippery slope, the FBI eventually let up after they claimed to have found their own way in. Obviously, this raised some eyebrows, and there has been a great deal of curiosity as to where that iOS vulnerability lay.
Unfortunately, we still don’t know. This vulnerability is one separate from what they used to crack into Farook’s iPhone.
Apple Already Knew of iOS Vulnerability
According to Apple, this is a vulnerability that they already knew about. In fact, they have fixed it with iOS 9, as well as OS X El Capitan – Mac computers are also effected.
So, why share this information in the first place? Why not alert Apple about the coding vulnerability that could lead to leaked data later on?
The FBI actually claims that they don’t know how the San Bernadino shooter’s phone was cracked. This was just a happy accident that they came across, and happens to be one that was already fixed in the latest version of the software. Convenient, right?
In the end, this is just a ploy from the agency to show that they are willing to share information. Even though that information is outdated, and unrelated to what Apple actually wants to know.
As for Apple, it is a way to show that they are totally on top of vulnerabilities (except the one people want to know about), and that there is nothing to worry about. As long as you have updated your software, there is no threat from that particular security issue.
What This Mean For Users
Nothing that wasn’t true before. Software is going to have flaws. We are often going to learn about them too late. There is no real privacy when it comes to technology. And departments in the government, like departments in corporations, are going to do what they choose without enough oversight under the guise of national security, or profitable interests.