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DOJ says it may have a way to access locked iPhone; hearing postponed

Published Mar 21st, 2016 9:11PM EDT
iPhone Hacking

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In a strange turn of events that some might not find all that surprising, the DOJ asked the court overseeing the ongoing battle over the San Bernardino terrorist’s iPhone to postpone a hearing which was scheduled to take place tomorrow. The reason? The DOJ believe it may have discovered a way to access the locked iPhone that wouldn’t require Apple engineers to create an entirely new version of iOS.

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According to a court filing made on Monday afternoon, the FBI maintains that it never stopped looking for ways to access the iPhone as it continued to battle it out with Apple in court. As the case continued to pick up steam in the press, the FBI continued to seek and receive assistance from those outside the U.S. government.

The filing reads in part:

On Sunday, March 20, 2016, an outside party demonstrated to the FBI a possible method for unlocking Farook’s iPhone. Testing is required to determine whether it is a viable method that will not compromise data on Farook’s iPhone. If the method is viable, it should eliminate the need for the assistance from Apple Inc. (“Apple”) set forth in the All Writs Act Order in this case.

Consequently, the DOJ asked the court to vacate tomorrow’s hearing, a request which was quickly granted.


Yoni Heisler Contributing Writer

Yoni Heisler has been writing about Apple and the tech industry at large with over 15 years of experience. A life long expert Mac user and Apple expert, his writing has appeared in Edible Apple, Network World, MacLife, Macworld UK, and TUAW.

When not analyzing the latest happenings with Apple, Yoni enjoys catching Improv shows in Chicago, playing soccer, and cultivating new TV show addictions.