NSA reportedly has backdoor access to iPhone, can remotely activate mic and camera
By End the Lie
During the 30th Chaos Communications Congress in Berlin over the weekend, Jacob Applebaum, who co-wrote the Der Spiegel report, revealed even more NSA programs and capabilities.
Applebaum, who is also a journalist and has played a large part in the publishing of Snowden’s leaks, said his apartment in Berlin was subjected to raids.
In the presentation, which has been viewed over 152,000 times since Dec. 30, Applebaum reveals that the NSA has long had the ability to hack into private WiFi networks from almost 10 miles away.
During his presentation, Applebaum also revealed a new NSA document that shows just how much access the NSA has to Apple’s iPhone.
“DROPOUT JEEP is a software implant for the Apple iPhone that utilizes modular mission applications to provide specific SIGINT functionality,” the document states, according to Forbes.
Apparently, the NSA can remotely access just about everything from the popular smartphone.
“This functionality includes the ability to remotely push/pull files from the device. SMS retrieval, contact list retrieval, voicemail, geolocation, hot mic, camera capture, cell tower location, etc. Command, control and data exfiltration can occur over SMS messaging or a GPRS data connection. All communications with the implant will be covert and encrypted,” the document states.
If the document is genuine, that means that the NSA can remotely harvest all the most sensitive private data from an iPhone with no user knowledge.
Furthermore, the “hot mic” and “camera capture” features would mean that the iPhone can also be used as an easy remote surveillance device, if Applebaum’s presentation is accurate.
Since most users carry their phones with them everywhere, it could be an easy way for the NSA to conduct surveillance if necessary, assuming the NSA document is real.
The NSA claims to have a 100 percent success rate in installing their malware on iPhones.
“Here’s a problem: I don’t really believe that Apple didn’t help them,” Applebaum said during his presentation, referring to the NSA.
“I can’t really prove it, but they [the NSA] literally claim that anytime they target an iOS device, that it will succeed for implantation,” he said. “Either they have a huge collection of exploits that work against Apple products, meaning that they are hoarding information about critical systems that American companies produce and sabotaging them, or Apple sabotaged it themselves. Not sure which one it is.”
Applebaum said he likes to hope that Apple didn’t sign on to the PRISM program until after the death of Steve Jobs and that maybe they just write inferior software that is easily exploited by the NSA.
Today, Apple said it was as “unaware” as everyone else of the NSA’s reported ability to gain access to almost all iPhone data.
In a statement released Monday, Apple said they “never worked with the NSA to create a backdoor in any of our products, including iPhone,” according to the Daily Dot.
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by End the Lie
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