Texas Rangers issue warrant to decrypt iPhone SE following Southerland Springs shooting

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Date: Monday, November 20th, 2017, 03:08
Category: iCloud, iPhone, Legal, News, security, Touch ID

Similar to the San Bernadino shooting of almost two years ago, Apple has officially been served with a search warrant for access to the iPhone SE used by the man responsible for the Sutherland Springs, Texas shooting. The move comes after an earlier fumble that saw the Texas Rangers and FBI fail to act within 48 hours to unlock the device in question with Touch ID…

The Texas Rangers served Apple with a warrant to access both David Kelley’s iPhone SE and iCloud account. The Rangers have also expressed interest in a second phone used by Kelley made by LG. Apple stated earlier this month that it contacted law enforcement officials roughly 48 hours after the shooting to see if it could be of any help. During that first 48 hours, when Touch ID would have still been enabled, law enforcement made no efforts to ask Apple for help or to use Touch ID to unlock the phone. Instead, it shipped the device off to a crime lab in Quantico, Virginia.

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Following tax investigation, Apple shelters billions in profits via Irish channels

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Date: Wednesday, November 8th, 2017, 03:32
Category: Finance, Legal, News

Apple has apparently found the mother of all tax shelter combinations.

Despite company CEO Tim Cook having stated that “We pay all the taxes we owe, every single dollar. We don’t depend on tax gimmicks, we don’t stash money on some Caribbean island” during a a United States Senate investigative subcommittee hearing in 2013, the company has apparently begun hoarding tax revenue through a connection in Ireland.

Within five months after Cook’s testimony, Irish officials began to crack down on the tax structure Apple was thought to be using. Apple had parked billions of dollars into multiple Irish jurisdictions before settling on the small island of Jersey, which typically does not tax corporate income.

In short, it seems that Apple has placed more than $128 billion in profits offshore, nearly all of these profits having been made since 2007 and the continued extraordinary success of the iPhone.

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Robbers snag 313 iPhone X units being delivered to San Francisco Apple Store location

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Date: Friday, November 3rd, 2017, 04:39
Category: iPhone, Legal, News, retail

It’s not quite the equivalent of the bank robbery scene in “Heat”, but it’s getting there. On Wednesday, three “husky” men in hoodies driving a white Dodge van broke into a UPS truck Wednesday while it was parked outside a San Francisco Apple Store.

The UPS truck was delivering 313 iPhone X units to the Apple Store, wherein the robbery itself occurred between 11:15 a.m. and 11:30 a.m. PT.

The total value of the stolen merchandise was estimated to be more than $370,000. The iPhone X, which becomes available in stores Friday, starts at $999 apiece. The suspects have yet to be caught.

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Qualcomm files suit against Apple, cites breach of contract, unchecked access to development resources

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Date: Friday, November 3rd, 2017, 03:47
Category: Hardware, Intel, iPad, iPhone, Legal, News, Processors

On Wednesday, chipmaker Qualcomm filed suit against Apple, claiming Apple has failed to abide by the terms of a software license and said it may have used its unprecedented access to that code to help Qualcomm-rival Intel Corp.

The two companies are now engaged in a lawsuit over technology licensing fees that Qualcomm charges for patents. Apple has stated that Qualcomm is charging too much and has leveraged its strong market position in chips illegally. Qualcomm has countered that Apple, one of its largest customers, has lied to regulators in an unfair attempt to bully it into charging less.

Apple currently uses Qualcomm’s chips as modems without its devices to communicate with cellular networks. Apple has widened its supplier base to include Intel for some of the chips, beginning with the iPhone 7. The company has yet to respond to requests seeking comment.

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Chinese telecom companies cut Apple Watch Series 3 access to LTE, cite government security concerns

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Date: Friday, October 20th, 2017, 05:56
Category: Apple Watch, Hardware, Legal, News, security, Wearables

China has terminated LTE access for the Apple Watch Series 3 without explanation. Per the Wall Street Journal, all three major carriers in China have closed off LTE access, apparently over the government’s security concerns over the device.

The WSJ reports that LTE functionality was available on China Unicom at launch, but new subscriptions were terminated just a few days later. Existing users are so far unaffected, it says.

It’s thought that the government was concerned about the fact that it could not track the new Apple Watch Series 3’s user base given its use of an eSIM device.

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FCC pushes for Apple to activate FM transmitters in iPhones following recent string of natural disasters

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Date: Friday, September 29th, 2017, 05:38
Category: Hardware, iPhone, Legal, News

Following up on renewed pressure from the National Association of Broadcasters urging Apple to the FM radio capabilities built into the wireless modem of every iPhone, FCC chairman Ajit Pai has stated that he hopes Apple will “reconsider its position” following Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria, which have devastated parts of the United States, including Florida and Texas, and Caribbean islands like Barbuda, Dominica, and Puerto Rico.

Pai went on record to state that “it is time for Apple to step up to the plate and put the safety of the American people first.”

The comment comes from Pai’s following full statement:

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iOS 11 feature could allow iPhone Touch ID feature to be disabled, thereby adding additional layer of privacy via “cop button”

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Date: Monday, August 21st, 2017, 05:30
Category: iOS, iPhone, Legal, News, privacy, Software, Touch ID

Over the years, Apple’s Touch ID technology has proven to be a legal gray area whenever law enforcement or border patrol asked you to hand over your iPhone.

A new feature may have surfaced in a beta of iOS 11 that essentially functions as a “cop button”, wherein the iPhone owner can set up a provision in the update allowing you to choose whether to keep TouchID on or not. Instead of relying on Touch ID, users could incorporate a long, complex password, thus locking out cops and anyone who doesn’t know the passphrase.

Currently, police can force you to use your fingerprint to unlock the phone, but they can’t force you to use your password — something that has been proven by law to be protected.

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Apple disables Apple Pay functionality for white supremacist websites, online storefronts

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Date: Friday, August 18th, 2017, 05:03
Category: Apple Pay, Legal, News

This is pretty significant.

On Wednesday, Apple confirmed that the company had disabled Apple Pay functionality for websites that sell apparel and paraphernalia from white nationalists and hate groups.

The discontinuation of service applies to garments with Nazi logos, t-shirts sporting the phrase “White Pride,” and a bumper sticker showing a car plowing into stick figure demonstrators. The move follows Saturday’s Charlottesville demonstrations, where one woman was killed by a car driven by a white nationalist. As a result, the company blocked three white nationalist sites from using Apple Pay.

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New TSA policy requires U.S. passengers to remove iPads, MacBooks from carry-on bags for scanning

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Date: Thursday, July 27th, 2017, 05:26
Category: Hardware, iPad, Legal, MacBook, News

Per a new policy issued by the Transportation Safety Administration on Wednesday, over the coming weeks and months, passengers will no longer be able to keep their iPads or smaller MacBook notebooks in their bags when passing through security screenings. Instead, the devices will have to be placed in a separate bin to be x-rayed.

The new policy states that “all electronics larger than a cell phone” will be subject to this scrutiny.

Previously, Apple’s ultra-thin iPad, as well as the MacBook Air and 12-inch MacBook, were given approval to stay in a bag when being scanned.

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FDA initiates program towards streamlining approvals for digital devices

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Date: Monday, June 19th, 2017, 05:12
Category: Health, iOS, iPhone, Legal, News, Software, watchOS

This may help Apple’s plans to help make HealthKit ubiquitous and to get digital patient records out in a timely manner.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) commissioner Scott Gottlieb this week released a statement on how the government agency is aiming to streamline innovation of digital health and medical technology through a new approach to regulating devices:

FDA will soon be putting forward a broad initiative that is focused on fostering new innovation across our medical product centers. I will have more to say on many elements of this initiative soon. However, today I want to focus on one critical aspect of this innovation initiative: A new Digital Health Innovation Plan that is focused on fostering innovation at the intersection of medicine and digital health technology. This plan will include a novel, post-market approach to how we intend to regulate these digital medical devices.

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