Speaking at the International Conference on Cyber Security in Manhattan, New York, FBI forensic expert Stephen Flatley lambasted Apple for making it so hard to hack the iPhones.
Flatley called the company “jerks” and “evil geniuses” for making his and his colleagues’ investigative work harder, while pointing out how Apple has changed the hash iterations for passwords from 10,000 to 10,000,000 (via Motherboard).
While referring to the difficulty of cracking a password using a “brute force” method on iPhones, the FBI hacker explained that password attempts speed has now gone from 45 passwords a second to one every 18 seconds. While there are tools to input thousands of passwords in a very short period of time, it becomes much harder and slower to crack if the attempts per minute are limited.
“Your crack time just went from two days to two months,” Flatley said. “At what point is it just trying to one up things and at what point is it to thwart law enforcement?” he added. “Apple is pretty good at evil genius stuff.”
On the other hand, Flatley repeatedly praised the israeli company Cellebrite, which sells hacking devices and technologies to law enforcement agencies around the world. Flatley said that they are the ones who can counter Apple’s security technology. “If you have another evil genius, Cellebrite,then maybe we can get into that front,” he said, facetiously coughing as he said “Cellebrite.”
Meanwhile, Apple gets praised by cybersecurity experts from all over the world for its iPhone encryption, as it keeps the average consumer’s data safe from hackers and authoritarian surveillance.