Rumor: FBI reaches out to Israeli mobile forensics company Cellebrite to help unlock San Bernadino iPhone 5c
Date: Wednesday, March 23rd, 2016, 07:31
Category: iPhone, Rumor, security
When in doubt, go to the Israelis for help.
The so-far unnamed third party that’s helping the FBI try to unlock the iPhone 5c linked to the San Bernadino shootings is Cellebrite, a mobile forensics company based in Israel.
The FBI has reportedly contacted Cellebrite to help break the encryption on the infamous iPhone according to sources close to the story. Cellebrite has not responded to the report. But if it is indeed the “third party” in question, and it is able to break into the terrorist’s iPhone, it would bring the high-stakes legal showdown between the government and Apple to an abrupt end. Cellebrite, considered one of the leading companies in the world in the field of digital forensics, has been working with the world’s biggest intelligence, defense and law enforcement authorities for many years. The company provides the FBI with decryption technology as part of a contract signed with the bureau in 2013.
Cellebrite has declined to comment on this story.
In other news, famed hacker and whistle blower Edward Snowden has described two possible methods that could be used, both complex and high-risk. The first is to use chip decapping to physically reveal the passcode. A lower-risk method would be to desolder the flash memory and reset the counter between attempts by copying the original data back to it.
In the Congressional hearing, Cybersecurity professor Susan Landau strongly hinted that the NSA may also have the capacity to break into the handset using techniques unknown to the FBI.
The court hearing originally intended to hear arguments from both sides has been put on hold for now.
Stay tuned for additional details as they become available.