The iPhone hasn’t always been known for its security. In fact, when the handset first launched back in 2007, hackers could gain root access to the device through simple application exploits.

But it fixed that particular bug in early 2008, and has since then spent a lot of time and resources on beefing up its iOS security. And MIT says that the extra effort is paying off…

The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (or MIT) is a private research university filled with some of the brightest minds in the world. So its opinions and reports on mobile security and other technological matters carry far more weight than the average joe. And here’s what it’s saying about iOS:

“In fact, in its efforts to make its devices more secure, Apple has crossed a significant threshold. Technologies the company has adopted protect Apple customers’ content so well that in many situations it’s impossible for law enforcement to perform forensic examinations of devices seized from criminals. Most significant is the increasing use of encryption, which is beginning to cause problems for law enforcement agencies when they encounter systems with encrypted drives.”

The report goes on to say that Apple’s security is causing so much problems for law enforcement and forensic agencies, there are literally hundreds of unprocessed civil cases because they can’t get past iOS encryption for evidence discovery. Wow.

And as much as Apple loathes the jailbreak community, you’d have to be blind not to see that iOS security is where it’s at thanks to us. Well, not us in particular, but the smart folks like pod2g, Comex, and the Dev teams that, over the years, have been able to do what others haven’t — break through Apple’s security, and push it forward.

If you’re in to the real technical stuff, you can read about what makes iOS more secure than Android and other platforms here. But the bottom line is, Apple has really stepped up its mobile security game, and it’s starting to turn heads.