Why the Cops Hate the New Apple and Google Phones
Posted Date: 19-Nov-2014
The police are upset about Apple and Google’s latest smartphone advances.
The problem is the encryption in both the iOS 8 and Android Lollipop operating systems. It is turned on by default, and there is no master key that Apple or Google can give to investigators, even if they have a warrant.
“Unlike our competitors, Apple cannot bypass your passcode and therefore cannot access this data,” Apple brags on its site. “So it’s not technically feasible for us to respond to government warrants.”
Google is not as direct in its security sales pitch for Android 5.0 Lollipop, shipping on the Nexus 6 and (slowly) coming to other devices: “Full device encryption occurs at first boot, using a unique key that never leaves the device.”
What Apple and Google tout as a feature, police see as a bug, and not the kind they can use to listen in on the bad guys.
“Encryption threatens to lead all of us to a very dark place,” FBI Director James Comey warned in a speech last month. “Justice may be denied because of a locked phone or an encrypted hard drive.”