The Intercept reports the Central Intelligence Agency has been working for years to find ways to break through the security of Apple devices, with work spanning a year before the first iPhone was released. The Intercept basis its report on leaked documents, that explain a yearly gathering of CIA officials, called the “Jamboree”, to talk about flaws in commercial electronics.
The CIA declined to comment, however the report describes a process of the Agency working to decrypt and ultimately penetrate Apple’s encrypted firmware. The Agency has claimed internally that it’s created a modified version of Xcode to sneak through surveillance backdoors, which could enable spies to steal passwords and grab messages on infected devices.
Other forms of intrusion include a keylogger through the OS X updater, which would allow spies to see what a user is typing on an “infected” Mac.
According to internal reports, the CIA is rationalizing these types of tools to “secure communications products, both foreign and domestic” in order to “develop exploitation capabilities against the authentication and encryption schemes.” US and UK government officials have long encouraged Apple to allow them into its servers through a “backdoor”.
Apple declined to comment on the allegations against the CIA, and pointed The Intercept to Apple’s past stance on privacy.
In February 2015, Tim Cook, CEO of Apple, took a strong stance on consumer privacy in an interview with The Telegraph.
“None of us should accept that the government or a company or anybody should have access to all of our private information,” Cook said. “This is a basic human right. We all have a right to privacy. We shouldn’t give it up. We shouldn’t give in to scaremongering or to people who fundamentally don’t understand the details.”
It’s not known if the CIA has been successful in its attack on Apple devices. However, it’s been noted the Agency has failed to find a “backdoor” into Apple’s servers to collect information from customers.
Source: The Intercept