Thanks to a court order, Apple may be forced to assist the FBI to crack the passcode of the iPhone used by San Bernardino shooter Syed Farook, but now reports are rife that the company is working on a new iPhone that is unhackable.
According to a report by The New York Times, Apple has started working on imbibing stringent security measures into the iPhone which even the company itself will not be able to hack. This move is in a bid to protect iOS devices.
"Apple engineers have begun developing new security measures that would make it impossible for the government to break into a locked iPhone using methods similar to those now at the center of a court fight in California, according to people close to the company and security experts," reported the publication on Wednesday.
The report reveals that Apple has been working on making its popular smartphone near impossible to crack even prior to the December 2015 attacks.
In the event Apple becomes successful in updating the security of its iPhone and making it unhackable, which experts believe the company can, the Cupertino-based company would have created a potential technical challenge for law enforcement agencies. In such a scenario, if the FBI wanted to crack the iPhone in the near future, a new method would have to be devised by the agency to do so.
In the San Bernardino shooting case, Apple was ordered by the court to assist the FBI in cracking the passcode on Farook's iPhone 5c. The FBI asked Apple to create an iOS version that would disable the security features of the passcode and enable them to be entered electronically. Apple described this software "too dangerous to create."
Apple has expressed concerns that the creation of such a custom software could aid one to "unlock any iPhone" including the latest devices. If Apple loses the court appeal against FBI and is compelled to create the iOS software version that the agency wants, then in the near future the stronger security, which won't allow an iPhone to be hacked, will work in Apple's favor. How? The FBI won't be able to crack this security.
The alleged new security measures Apple is working on won't enable the U.S. government to use any passcode bypassing techniques to gain access to iOS devices in the near term.
Whether there is any truth in Apple developing an iPhone that cannot be hacked is circumspect and time will tell if the company has indeed successfully developed such a device.