Apple have refused an FBI request to help crack the iPhone of a terrorist.
Ray McClure, the uncle of murdered soldier Drummer Lee Rigby has said that Apple is protecting terrorists, and that ‘life comes before privacy’.
I think Drummer Rigby’s uncle is mistaken, both in his assumptions about what Apple is technically capable of, and the moral trade-off between life and privacy.
We need to understand that Apple are not being asked to decrypt just the iPhone of one particular terrorist. They are not like a landlord with a spare key that will open a particular door. If they were, then there would be legitimacy in Mr McClure’s complaints. A judge could examine the particular case at hand, and then sign a warrant that permitted entry to the property or decryption of a device. Targeted surveillance and privacy violations are a legitimate law enforcement tool.
But that is not the request. Instead, the FBI have asked Apple to hack their entire operating system in such a way that would enable them to by-pass encryption on any iPhone. Including mine. Continue reading “I Take Full Responsibility For Apple Inc Protecting The Privacy of a Dead Terrorist”
What with the Heartbleed exploit, and approaching anniversary of the Edward Snowden revelations, I have been doing a lot of thinking about encryption of my e-mails and digital files. A couple of weeks ago, at the FairSay e-Campaigning forum, I had a good chat with the folk from Open Rights Group who encouraged me to set up OwnCloud (which I’ve already done) and install open-source encryption for my e-mail.
I operate computers using both Microsoft Windows and Mac OS X, and use the standard mail applications for each. Its not too hard to find open source encryption for these programmes, but I thought I would oil the cogs of the Internet by linking to them here.
gpg4win is the free and open-source encryption tool for Microsfot Outlook. Installation is a relatively simple procedure and the end result is that you get an extra menu item, ‘Add Ins’, which has a big ‘encrypt this message’ button on it. GPGTools is an analogus appliocation for Apple Mail on a Mac. Installation is just as easy—a single click to run the installer—and little ‘encrypt’ and ‘sign’ icons appear alongside the signature icons in a mail compose window. Continue reading “Free encryption for Outlook and Apple Mail”