How did the FBI exactly hack into the iPhone of the San Bernardino terrorist?

How the FBI hacked into the iPhone of the San Bernardino terrorist
How the FBI hacked into the iPhone of the San Bernardino terrorist

When the FBI wanted to access the contents of the San Bernardino terrorist’s iPhone Apple flatly refused. The company said it won’t compromise on the invincibility of its own encryption system by helping the FBI hack into the iPhone of the San Bernardino terrorist. A bitter fight ensued between the FBI and Apple. The matter was scheduled for a hearing when the FBI said that it has figured out how to hack into the iPhone of the terrorist and there was no need to pursue the case further with Apple. But how did the FBI exactly hack into the iPhone of the San Bernardino terrorist? Even Apple would like to know.

Although it isn’t yet clear whether the FBI is going to tell Apple how it hacked into the iPhone, what is being revealed gradually, according to this Fortune link, is that the FBI purchased a tool from a private source to get the job done. The link says that the information has come from a “private source” but here’s the CNNMoney link that quotes the FBI Director James Comey as saying, “Litigation between the government and Apple over the San Bernardino phone has ended, because the government has purchased, from a private party, a way to get into that phone, 5C, running iOS 9.”

“The people we bought this from, I know a fair amount about them, and I have a high degree of confidence that they are very good at protecting it, and their motivations align with ours,” Comey added.

Is the FBI going to tell Apple exactly how they hacked into the iPhone of the San Bernardino terrorist? They may or they may not, said the director. The government is contemplating to tell the people at Apple how they pulled it off.

He said, “We tell Apple, then they are going to fix it, then we’re back where we started from. We may end up there, we just haven’t decided yet.”

Is it necessary for Apple to know how the FBI hacked into the iPhone? It should work the both ways… Apple didn’t want to help the FBI, then how come the FBI becomes liable? Eventually it depends on how such laws are defined in the US.

About Amrit Hallan
Amrit Hallan is the founder of TechBakBak.com. He writes about technology not because "he loves to write about technology", he actually believes that it makes the world a better place. On Twitter you can follow him at @amrithallan

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