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FBI Calls Apple's Expansion of End-To-End Encryption 'Deeply Concerning'

Thursday December 8, 2022. 11:40 PM , from Slashdot
An anonymous reader quotes a report from MacRumors: Apple yesterday announced that end-to-end encryption is coming to even more sensitive types of iCloud data, including device backups, messages, photos, and more, meeting the longstanding demand of both users and privacy groups who have rallied for the company to take the significant step forward in user privacy. iCloud end-to-end encryption, or what Apple calls 'Advanced Data Protection,' encrypts users' data stored in iCloud, meaning only a trusted device can decrypt and read the data. iCloud data in accounts with Advanced Data Protection can only be read by a trusted device, not Apple, law enforcement, or government entities.

While privacy groups and apps applaud Apple for the expansion of end-to-end encryption in iCloud, governments have reacted differently. In a statement to The Washington Post, the FBI, the largest intelligence agency in the world, said it's 'deeply concerned with the threat end-to-end and user-only-access encryption pose.' Speaking generally about end-to-end encryption like Apple's Advanced Data Protection feature, the bureau said that it makes it harder for the agency to do its work and that it requests 'lawful access by design': 'This hinders our ability to protect the American people from criminal acts ranging from cyber-attacks and violence against children to drug trafficking, organized crime, and terrorism,' the bureau said in an emailed statement. 'In this age of cybersecurity and demands for 'security by design,' the FBI and law enforcement partners need 'lawful access by design.''

Former FBI official Sasha O'Connell also weighed in, telling The New York Times 'it's great to see companies prioritizing security, but we have to keep in mind that there are trade-offs, and one that is often not considered is the impact it has on decreasing law enforcement access to digital evidence.'

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

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