Apple’s battle against the US justice system looks to have come to an end for now. The court order requiring Cupertino to assist FBI investigators to unlock an iPhone belonging to one of the San Bernadino shooters has been put on hold. That being said, the stay of execution of the order was requested by the FBI themselves; who claim that they have found a way to break into the device.
“On Sunday, March 20, 2016, an outside party demonstrated to the FBI a possible method for unlocking Farook’s iPhone. Testing is required to determine whether it is a viable method that will not compromise data on Farook’s iPhone,” the government said.
Nothing is known about this secret method shared with the FBI, although it appears to be a reasonable answer to cracking the encryption on the iPhone. Admittedly, the government is keeping the option to compel Apple to unlock the phone open. The court order has not been rescinded; although the hearing that would have compelled Apple to obey has been delayed.
Essentially, the federal investigators have decided to try breaking into the iPhone by themselves once more. Should their methods fail, it is likely that they will once again turn to the courts to force Apple’s assistance.
This isn’t quite the end of the encryption debate surrounding the issue by a long shot. Even if the FBI manages to break into the iPhone in this case, there will likely be a future situation where it will fail. All this new information does is delay the inevitable battle between privacy advocates and national security concerns.
[Source: Ars Technica]