After an intense conflict between Apple and FBI over decryption of San Bernardino suspect’s iPhone, the company proved its marketing claims about defending customer privacy. Now that FBI has backed off from the case, more reputation is added to Apple’s brand image.
However, an offer to FBI from third party hacking service has confirmed that iOS isn’t the most secured platform. Yet, we assume that increasing encryption policies will elevate the hacking business in the future.
Apple isn’t the only company whose standing is gained by conflicts between government and law enforcement agencies over encryption. Recently, WhatsApp has made its entry to the encryption community.
WhatsApp Encryption Unleashed
The news about WhatsApp End-To-End Encryption has surprised millions of users spreading like fire to billions of users. After being taken over by Facebook, WhatsApp privacy policies were given a major revision.
The chat app giant has now enabled an end to end encryption feature for all conversations including documents & voice messages to protect activity of millions of users worldwide. This has left surveillance agencies unable to decrypt over 40 billion messages from WhatsApp daily traffic, which they were snooping on. WhatsApp users should expect following benefits with the latest encryption update:
- With the end-to-end encryption, conversations are scrambled and can only be decrypted by receiver’s device.
- Messages become unreadable if intercepted by snoops, hackers and State-surveillance agencies.
- Encryption will also apply to file transfers and calls.
- Intruders will now need to get physical access to device in order to see users’ conversation.
WhatsApp’s end-to-end encryption makes task tough for investigative agencies
— Yash (@AficionadoYash) April 8, 2016
Rise in Business of Hacking Services
After months of strong confrontation from Apple, numerous security experts advised the bureau to try unlocking the phone by their own, through any means. This included getting help from third party contractors and numerous news outlets reported that Israeli tech firm ‘Cellebrite’ was approached by the FBI.
The iPhone 5 of San Bernardino suspect Syed Farook was eventually unblocked possibly by Cellebrite but the FBI never disclosed a name. Considering the situation, data privacy advocates are concerned about device security & user privacy claims of various tech-giants, as cybersecurity & hacking services step upon the basic privacy rights of users.
Cybersecurity experts suggest that users should adapt data privacy tools like VPN, ad-blockers, internet security suites etc. for superior online privacy & robust data security against hackers, state-surveillances, and other malicious snoopers. By far, Virtual Private Networks have been the leading solution for online privacy, anonymous browsing and secure data transfers.