Technology news websites Gizmodo and Motherboard by Vice recently reported on the FBI’s ability to extract data from Lev Parnas’s Apple iPhone without having access to the device’s password. This accomplishment is most noteworthy because Parnas’s device is an Apple iPhone 11, one of Apple’s newest models, which would be running a relatively up-to-date version of Apple’s notoriously secure operating system iOS. Reports indicate the mobile phone forensics company Cellebrite was involved in the phone’s unlock.
It’s not clear if the device was unlocked by technicians from Cellebrite or if it simply provided the hardware or software means for the FBI to unlock the device. Currently, the forensic solutions offered by Cellebrite to digital forensic practitioners in the public sector do not provide this ability. As of this post, digital forensic consultants cannot unlock an Apple iPhone 11 without the password. It is also interesting to consider that while the FBI was apparently able to circumvent the password on this device the FBI, as well other government agencies, continue to pressure Apple to enable backdoor access into its devices and iCloud backups for law enforcement.
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Digital Forensics/Cybersecurity/Information Technology