Me right now.
A lot of people are claiming Apple’s decision to fight the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) is nothing more than a marketing play. But I swear that I can hear Tim Cook yelling, “Fuck the police!” because his company keeps making announcements that it’s going to make its products more secure:
WASHINGTON — Apple engineers have begun developing new security measures that would make it impossible for the government to break into a locked iPhone using methods similar to those now at the center of a court fight in California, according to people close to the company and security experts.
The company first raised the prospect of a security update last week in a phone call with reporters, who asked why the company would allow firmware — the software at the heart of the iPhone — to be modified without requiring a user password.
One senior executive, speaking on the condition of anonymity, replied that it was safe to bet that security would continue to improve. Separately, a person close to the company, who also spoke on the condition of anonymity, confirmed this week that Apple engineers had begun work on a solution even before the San Bernardino attack. A company spokeswoman declined to comment on what she called rumors and speculation.
Independent experts say they have held informal conversations with Apple engineers over the last week about the vulnerability. Exactly how Apple will address the issue is unclear. Security experts who have been studying Apple’s phone security say it is technically possible to fix.
In addition to senior executives talking about upcoming security enhancements, Apple has also added an interesting figure to its payroll:
I'm delighted to announce that I accepted an offer to be working with the CoreOS security team at Apple this summer.
— Frederic Jacobs (@FredericJacobs) February 25, 2016
Frederic Jacobs, for those who don’t know, was one of the developer of the iOS version of Signal, the secure messaging application created by Open Whisper Systems that I highly recommend.
It seems to me that Apple is doing more than marketing here. The company seems dedicated to offering a secure product to its customers. My greatest hope is that this encourages other companies to follow suit.