First they came for an iPhone 5c

Posting here and at masspirates.org.

The FBI got a judge to order Apple to create a custom iOS version so they can decrypt the work iPhone 5c of Syed Farook, one of the San Bernardino shooters. They want Apple to push out a custom version that will disable the delays between wrong pin entries and the ten wrong pin tries and the phone gets wiped security feature. Apple is fighting it.

This Tuesday the Pirate Party is joining with Fight for the Future to protest the judge’s order. We will meet at 5:30pm at the Apple Store, 815 Boylston Street in Boston. Join us and stand up for your privacy and right to keep your data encrypted and secure.

Considering that ISIS didn’t know about the attack, it is doubtful there is much on the phone that will help them get other leads. The FBI can already request the metadata (who was called, when, how long, from where) for Farook’s communications using the phone or any other service the shooters used. The mobile phone providers are always willing to provide that information, often for a fee. Whatever other info they need, the NSA has likely gathered it with their mass surveillance program. FBI could use the NSA’s data to identify what other information they need and then get a subpoena to get the data legally, though unconstitutionally.

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It isn’t as if the Federal government hasn’t used parallel construction in the past.

The phone was owned by Farook’s employer, the San Bernardino Health Department, and someone there reset the phone in an attempt to gain access. Had they not, the FBI could have backed up the data to Apple’s iCloud service and gained access to it. It isn’t clear who made the decision to reset the password.

Which is all good for the FBI, because it gives them the excuse they need to force Apple to modify iOS to make it easier to break into, and set a precedent for getting a backdoor in any phone, even newer ones. Once those backdoors are there, anyone can take advantage of them whether the security services of other countries, criminals or abusive ex-boyfriends. That process may already have begun with China.

So please come out this Tuesday and join the Pirate Party, Fight for the Future and others to protest the judge’s order. We will meet at 5:30pm at the Apple Store, 815 Boylston Street in Boston. The more people who stand up for privacy and encryption, the stronger is our message.

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