Now is a good time to worry about the future. We could wait awhile, but if everyone is out to get you– and too many are– a little paranoia today might give us more privacy and security tomorrow.
This week I have two new worries. iPhone security in the face of technology and legislation that aims to crack into our encrypted smartphone of choice. And what could happen if Apple’s Face ID technology showed up in public. All of those worries are happening now.
Not only are companies making and selling advanced tools to break into iPhones on the backside, various governments around the world want to unlock iPhones from the frontside– through legislation.
F.B.I. and Justice Department officials have been quietly meeting with security researchers who have been working on approaches to provide such “extraordinary access” to encrypted devices
Some of that exists already.
Department officials are convinced that mechanisms allowing access to the data can be engineered without intolerably weakening the devices’ security against hacking.
The key word there is intolerably. Intolerable to 1) what degree, and 2) to whom?
Susan Landau of Tufts University:
Building an exceptional access system is a complicated engineering problem with many parts that all have to work perfectly in order for it to be secure, and no one has a solution to it
Yet, an Israeli forensics company claims it can hack into almost any smartphone. For a price. Celebrite:
Cellebrite Advanced Unlocking Services is the industry’s only solution for overcoming many types of complex locks on market-leading devices. This can determine or disable the PIN, pattern, password screen locks or passcodes on the latest Apple iOS and Google Android devices
Who needs a backdoor when the front door is open?
What about the Touch ID of facial recognition, Face ID on iPhone X? Facial recognition is nothing new but it has become actively deployed in nations with more, shall we say, totalitarian governments.
From the South China Post:
Now with the help of artificial intelligence and facial recognition technology, jaywalkers will not only be publicly named and shamed, they will be notified of their wrongdoing via instant messaging – along with the fine.
Granted, this ain’t happening in Peoria, but trends are trends and this seems to be one that has legs.
First-tier Chinese cities like Beijing and Shanghai have already employed AI and facial recognition technology to regulate traffic and identify driver’s who violate road rules, while Shenzhen traffic police began displaying photos of jaywalkers on large LED screens at major intersections
Why is it that mankind can develop technology to track jaywalkers and traffic offenders but cannot determine when a politician is lying?
President George W. Bush when asked what Iraq had to do with the attack on the World Trade Center in New York:
Nothing, except for it’s part of—and nobody has ever suggested in this administration that Saddam Hussein ordered the attack. Iraq was a—the lesson of September the 11th is, take threats before they fully materialize, Ken. Nobody has ever suggested that the attacks of September the 11th were ordered by Iraq. I have suggested, however, that resentment and the lack of hope create the breeding grounds for terrorists who are willing to use suiciders to kill to achieve an objective.
And we want to trust our privacy and security to elected officials because they say we’ll be safe?
With facial recognition getting better by the day, how long before anything we say or do can be captured by a camera and a system which spits out an alert and publicly shames people while texting the cost of a fine?