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FBI to Help Local Law Enforcement Hack iPhones

Despite its previous statement that they would only hack one iPhone–the iPhone 5C used by San Bernardino, CA shooter–the Federal Bureau of Investigation told local law enforcement it will now help them unlock devices such as iPhones and iPads.

After repeated inquiries from local authorities asking the FBI to share how they cracked the iPhone 5C, the FBI answered with a letter telling local authorities they will provide “technical assistance” to them.

"The FBI will of course consider any tool that might be helpful to our partners. Please know that we will continue to do everything we can to help you consistent with our legal and policy constraints,” Kerry Sleeper, an Assistant Director in the FBI's Office of Partner Engagement wrote.

FBI agents often help local authorities access and search electronic devices, a law enforcement official told BuzzFeed News, but is still debating whether it will disclose the classified technique used on the San Bernardino phone to state and local criminal investigations.

In the legal stand-off between Apple and the FBI, Apple argued that the FBI's demand to create a tool to bypass certain Apple security features could put all iPhones at risk. The FBI responded that the case was only about a single phone.

Posted in General News

Tags: FBI, expectation of privacy, privacy concerns, local law enforcement

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