Forensics Researcher: Some Tools Can Still Access User Data in iOS 8

Apple has taken a huge step toward preserving the privacy of its users. The company has even claimed that”it’s not technically feasible for us to respond to government warrants for the extraction of this data from devices in their possession running iOS 8.” This is a significant step, toward protecting the data users store on their devices and complements the recent two-step authentication Apple launched with


While this is certainly impressive, security researcher Jonathan Zdziarski took a step back to reflect on what Apple is saying and what the reality is. Although it is important to know that Apple’s efforts to protect your privacy are huge, this doesn’t mean that the police can’t access your data.

So technically Apple can’t crack open your iPhone, but there are a few back doors that Apple didn’t close, as highlighted by Zdziarski. He previously pointed to the security holes Apple has closed with iOS 8, but he also emphasized the ones it didn’t.

And these are the ones that allow iTunes and Xcode to exchange information with third-party apps or access your media folder. Apple enables you to access your photos on your computer while the iPhone is locked. But this also allows law enforcement to use this mechanism to access your camera roll, videos and recordings, podcasts, books, iTunes media, and all third-party app data.

And since there are plenty of commercial forensic tools available to acquire such data from your iPhone, running iOS 8 won’t actually shield your data from law enforcement agencies.

These are just a few of Zdziarski’s highlights on privacy with iOS 8. You can read the full blog post here.