Resized PasscodeTime

The FBI is very concerned with the new privacy features Apple is touting in iOS 8, the organization’s director James Comey told The Huffington Post on Thursday. In particular, he’s concerned the company is marketing something “expressly to allow people to place themselves above the law.”

Comey’s remarks follow Apple’s move last week to be more transparent and informative about its user privacy policies. In a new webpage on the topic, the Cupertino firm said it no longer stores encryption keys for devices running iOS 8, meaning it can’t bypass pass codes—even under subpoena. 

Shortly after Apple’s announcement, Google said that it too would be encrypting user data by default in the next version of its Android operating system, which is set to be released next month. It also won’t store encryption keys off of devices, meaning they can’t be shared with law enforcement.

The shift in user privacy policies by the two tech giants comes as part of the aftermath of last year’s Edward Snowden leak, where several documents came out claiming that Apple, Google and other tech companies participated in an NSA program that gave the agency unrestricted access to user data.

Comey says he understands the need for privacy, and believes that the FBI should have to obtain a warrant to take content from anyone’s closet or smartphone. “But,” he adds, “the notion that someone would market a closet that could never be opened — even if it involves a case involving a child kidnapper and a court order — to me does not make any sense.”

[The Huffington Post]

  • MrE23

    Crocodile tears. “Above the law” is the exclusive domain of our nation’s law enforcement agencies, it would seem. Ironic.

    • toortoor

      these are not crocodile tears, these are “ahem, to keep people, ahem.. still trusting their phones, ahem.., and the company, ahem…, lets tell them we are, ahem…, concerned”
      think about it, you get concerned about something you are about to loose, not something you didn’t have in the first place (without a warrant) 😉

      • deepdvd

        theoatmealcom/comics/misspelling

  • The FBI can suck it.

    • iBanks

      I think I agree with the concern. With court order that is. I can’t imagine what one of you would feel towards Apple or Google had someone did great bodily harm to one of your loved ones, and that one text message to put them away for life is locked in an phone and can’t be retrieved and that individual get’s off the hook.

      • James Gunaca

        If an entire legal case rests on evidence from a cell phone only the case is flawed to begin with. Needs more police work.

      • Yerdaddy

        This.

      • Yerdaddy

        Law enforcement didn’t have problems prosecuting people before smartphones. Seems to reason they wouldn’t be any worse off now, without access to them. People need this privacy from our corporate controlled privacy invading overlords. Basic human rights shouldn’t be overlooked especially in this day and age.

      • re: “I can’t imagine how one of you would feel…” Of course you can. You’ve already done so, and imbedded it in your hypothetical. (“…had someone done great bodily harm to one of your loved ones…”)

        Now, given the fact that our 16 or so spy agencies, particularly the largest one, the National Surveillance Agency, now with its yotta-byte DB out there in Bluffdale, Utah, have been (British usage and US usage converge here) spying on all of our cell phone communications since about 1990 (project echelon)–that would be 25 years, or at least a generation ago) AND given that they’d been doing their dragnet warrantless wiretapping since late 2000 and early 2001, WELL BEFORE 9/11/20012, and absolutely FAILED to “provide for the common defense,” we should stop for a moment and analyze the facts, and submit them to a candid world, or a bunch of our fellow citizens (candid in the sense of “without prejudice” archaic).

        And given that they failed so spectacularly, but rewarded with money and promotions virtually ALL of those in charge of the FIASCO or “Epic Fail-ure”–and given that Phil Zelikow’s novel I think reached “best seller” status for a few hours in its history–seems to me that these Cheney-like hypotheticals are meant to mislead, obfuscate, set up a straw person, insert a red herring, etc. to the arguments.

        As Rummy himself said, “Our radar was pointed outward.” (And of course, if anyone has seen the 360° sweep of all the radars I’ve ever seen, there isn’t any such thing as “outward” or “inward” pointing radar). What Rummy meant to have said, were he an honest man, or should have been forced to admit, under oath, is that the National Surveillance Agency is indeed “inward-looking,” in the sense that it is tracking Americans and others who: speak out against, blow the whistle on, disagree with our various “administrations” and their “under infrastructure,” as the late Peter Jennings put it when talking about the controlled demolitions of WTC 1 & 2–even before WTC 7 was “pulled.”

      • iBanks

        Tha fucc?

      • Andy

        This only works if you have trust in the the judicial system to act in our best interest. The very fact that the FISA court exists in the shadows and approved the mass gathering of citizen’s data tells me that they don’t.
        Remember- just because something is legal doesn’t make it ethical.

      • Antzboogie

        Anyone heard of the Blackphone it self distructs all memory and is un retrievable and unusable and is more secured. The NSA and other agencies crossed the line and violated our rights. I will always respect Snowden for what he did. Im happy they protect our data.

      • Ted Forbes

        Give me a break

  • Jonathan

    So the fact that they’re worried about it, means that they were spying on us before?

    • Probably wondering why its not easy to do anymore lol.

  • Eikast

    No, it isn’t that consumers think that they are “Above the law” it’s law enforcement thinking that they’re “Above the law”.

  • Tony Trenkle Jr.

    If they can tell us where the UFOs are hidden then they can have more access

    • Chris Gaunt

      And who really shot Kennedy. Oh, and did we really land on the moon?

      • Jonathan

        That was solved long ago, lol.
        As for the 2nd part, see Mythbusters.

      • truth

        Ur shallow.

  • andr01d

    When the police stop being a clandestine military outfit, then they can start to expect a bit more public sympathy, but when you’re busy shooting people for not wearing a seatbelt, bashing homeless ladies faces in, spraying peaceful protestors with bear mace and riding around peaceful suburban neighbourhoods in wildcats, and tanks like a private army. Well, here’s me playing the worlds smallest violin.

  • jack

    SOB

  • Or maybe this is just a mind game to make you think it is very secure hat they can’t access it.

  • onesimpleclik

    What a bunch of hypocrites.

  • George

    the fbi is crying because they cant shit over our rights

  • Mr.Coolfreak

    Off topic, but hae you guys seen the recent advertising from Samsung? Pretty brutal.

    • George

      share

      • Mr.Coolfreak

        here

      • George

        wow, i’ve trashed the iphone this week but this is a new low samsung!

      • Kurt

        It’s a new a high, they copied Samsung and failed with a flawed design iPhone.

    • onesimpleclik

      Not Samsung, just someone screwing around in Photoshop.

      • Mr.Coolfreak

        i got the bottom from samsung’s twitter

      • CollegiateLad

        Why is it brutal? It’s kinda funny.

    • I doubt its from samsung, they would advertise the Note 4 instead…

    • Yerdaddy

      Who cares. Shouldn’t you be pulling out your own mat instead of trolling around online?

    • Not an ad from Samsung. Some Egyptian guy did it. Samsung would use their latest device (Note 4) in comparison.

  • @dongiuj

    Good on you apple! NWA the police

    • Kurt

      what’s NWA?

      • @dongiuj

        NWA is a mid 80s rap group. Ice-cube, Dr Dre, Eazy-E….can’t remember the others. Early “gangster rap”.

      • Kurt

        Yeah yeah yeah, I didn’t expect a reference about the racist ice-cubes old group. I couldn’t get NWO out of my head. Kept saying “New W___ A___”

        lol

  • Anything the FBI complains about should probably be assumed to be A GOOD THING. Unless, of course, the FBI is playing B’rer Rabbit to Congress’s B’rer Fox. You perhaps remember the bedtime Uncle Remus tales, and the episode where B’rer Rabbit, stuck to the tar baby trap set by B’rer Fox, convinces B’rer Fox, by yelling, “Please don’t throw me into that briar patch, through many iterations,” to get B’rer Fox to actually throw him into the briar patch, where Rabbit can snag the tar baby on the briars and pull himself free.
    Or more tersely stated, Mr. Comey could be faking his protestations, because this new 4th Amendment briar patch has already been shorn of its thorns, and will still leave We the People shorn of our Enumerated and UNenumerated Constitutional Rights (see Writ of Habeas Corpus & first 8 amendments for “enumerated rights,” and Amendments 9 and 10 for UN-enumerated rights retained by We the People.

    • mrgerbik

      or the ‘apple efforts’ weren’t really efforts at all

  • Franklin Richards

    Won’t be long before they find a way. They’re just pissed they have to do extra work.

  • mahe

    Come on …
    The system has to decrypt the data (otherwise you wouldn’t be able to see the stored data like attachmens, pics, …).
    So you know where to go to attack …
    You just need access to the phone, and as you can push several stuff over the cellular network to the phone without the letting the user know …
    Encryption is only safe if you can’t decrypt it, but then it’s useless …

    And there is iCloud …

  • Scree

    Lol at all the hate for law enforcement on this page. FBI, Police whatever. What a bunch of bandwagon circle jerkers. Yet when you find yourself in trouble. You’re on the phone fast as lightning dialing 911/999.

    • Mike Francis

      The police has a legal monopoly on law enforcement in the U.S. As much as I want to, I can’t call anyone else.

    • Yerdaddy

      Suck it, cop lover. Your ignorance on the subject and what is going on in those shithole we live in is absurd. People like you need to either wake up, or jump into the same hole these organizations that want to be above the law belong.

      • Scree

        Right. Mr rebel without a cause. Good one. Lmao.

    • ishatmypants

      Nope I handle shit myself sorry bro if u need to call 911 and wait 20 min for them to come help u that’s on u

    • mrgerbik

      so you’re essentially saying to overlook all bad behaviour by people in law enforcement because all people in law enforcement are above the law and without reproach?

  • Micky Ganon

    #bendgate

    • Yerdaddy

      Looks like a crackhead in the avatar. Amiright?

  • I honestly think they have issued this statement to get the skeptical back in good standings with these companies and their personal data…but thats just me lol.

  • Anonomous.TECH.man

    YA! FBI can eat a bowl of suck it soup.

  • NeftyCorrea

    The FIB can go suck it we need our privacy and they need to mind there own business them noise birds

  • vifish

    Why FBI and NSA did not prevented the 9/11 attack? The Boston attack? They must worry about SERIOUS stuff and not trying to break our privacy, apple is doing right to don’t store the encryption keys, as well as google is going to do the same thing.

  • lou08

    there is something in the air. This week for Apple can’t be credible. I bet someone’s doing a black work against Apple.

  • Kurt

    Good job Apple. More of this.

  • Steiganator

    i think its beautiful 🙂

  • GNZT

    Well done Apple/Google, tell the people what they want to hear, back it up with FBI ooh not fair propaganda… When all along people might believe they are free from prying eyes…. Little do you know…

  • Tommmy

    Ah, so this is who’s leaked the celebrity photos!

  • Ted Forbes

    This idiot must be talking about the phones of powerless and the poor, the rich and powerful is out of the jurisdiction of the law, period.

  • Frozen Bee .GFKS

    lol, of course hes concerned, because its harder for him to spy on us now….motherf****er

  • Stay out of our private phones.