Encryption Showdown? FBI Can’t Get into Texas Church Shooter’s Phone

Discussion in 'HardForum Tech News' started by Megalith, Nov 7, 2017.

  1. Megalith

    Megalith 24-bit/48kHz Staff Member

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    According to Christopher Combs, FBI special agent in charge, the authorities have been unable to get into the phone of Devin Patrick Kelley due to encryption. That problem could rekindle a battle that gained national attention after Apple refused to help federal investigators break into an iPhone used by Syed Farook, the shooter who killed 14 in San Bernardino, CA in 2015.

    “It actually highlights an issue that you’ve all heard about before, with the advance of the technology and the phones and the encryptions," Combs said at a press conference Tuesday. "Law enforcement — whether that’s at the state and local or at the federal level — is increasingly not able to get into these phones.” Combs declined to reveal what type of cellphone Kelley owned.
     
  2. panhead

    panhead Gawd

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    "authorities have been unable to get into the phone of Devin Patrick Kelley"

    So what? There is no evidence on the phone need for his prosecution.
     
  3. Cantroy

    Cantroy Lurker

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    Encryption really isn't the problem here. How he managed to get access to the weapons he had were the issue. Besides, I think most of us here realize that in time, it'll be cracked and such anyway, as they have always been, and they find some small tidbit they didn't have before, but likely not.



    For the encryption, the government does NOT need a back door. We already see cops taking advantage of their power over others. I don't need an oppressive government to have even more control than it has, and I feel the USA is going down a dark path already.
     
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  4. Hagrid

    Hagrid [H]ardForum Junkie

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    Don;t think they care about that now. Maybe somebody helped? Never know until you check.
     
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  5. jardows

    jardows [H]ard|Gawd

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    Not sure what the law enforcement need here is? He purchased the firearm through legal means, it was a mistake on the Air Force that didn't record his conviction properly that made him inelligible to purchase it. We know he perpetrated the crime, and he isn't going to murder any more people. Unless there is concern he was working with someone else, who is also planning a similar attack, I don't know why there needs to be a long, ongoing investigation.
     
  6. MarkVI

    MarkVI Limp Gawd

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    Agreed, but the manufacturer should be compelled to unlock the device when presented with a court order. The problem is that our police (at all levels) feel like they should be able to bypass the courts. The system of court issued warrants is supposed to protect us from overreach.
     
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  7. vegeta535

    vegeta535 2[H]4U

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    I don't get it either but motive of these people are important for some reason. He was more then likely mentally unstable and had his reason to do what he did. Finding out the motive really wont change anything or help prevent future incidents.
     
  8. azuza001

    azuza001 Gawd

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    5$ says it is an iPhone.

    Seriously though, I am all for encryption and privacy. I don't want anyone getting into my stuff whenever they want even though I have nothing to hide, that's not the point. However the moment this guy went mental and started shooting up the church his right to privacy went out the window. And the issue then are companies that don't want to have the option to unlock their own devices so that they don't have to if compelled to. It's like throwing away the key so that when asked to drive you can say "can't no key" and not just "no, I dont want to".
     
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  9. vegeta535

    vegeta535 2[H]4U

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    Not even that to be honest. Manufacturer shouldn't be making back door to their devices to begin with.
     
  10. Snowdensjacket

    Snowdensjacket Limp Gawd

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    If the people in that church had hand guns maybe he wouldn't have killed so many people.

    You know why we need assault rifles? Because that oppressive government has them already.
     
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  11. magnetik

    magnetik Moderator Staff Member

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    Can't they pay the Israeli's like they did last time?
     
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2017
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  12. Jagger100

    Jagger100 [H]ardness Supreme

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    Yes let's put cameras in every home wired directly to local law enforcement. Never know until you check, right?

    This authority grab is even more transparent than the San Bernardino one. They have everything they need for possible associates from his social media and phone records. Oh, they might have to get up off their asses. Oh my.
     
  13. Tiberian

    Tiberian DILLIGAFuck

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    See, that's where the problem comes from because once the device is sold the manufacturer really isn't responsible for its use anymore, this kind of action just continually drags them back into it when they are no longer responsible for the device or the use of the device.

    To use a gun analogy: once Smith & Wesson or Beretta or whatever gun manufacturer makes the gun and sells it, they're no longer responsible for the product or the use of it. To add an encryption analogy aka not being able to glean any useful information from the phone because of encryption, guns can have their serial numbers filed or ground off 'em which renders them basically useless for providing any further information.

    No it's not the best analogy, I'll grant you that without question, but even so there's a small bit of rationale at work there. :D
     
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  14. Jagger100

    Jagger100 [H]ardness Supreme

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    And if the invasion of privacy would have prevented this, you might have a point. On more than one count, existing laws dealing with his mental well being should have not allowed this to happen. What does more information serve if LE can't make proper use of what they already have?
     
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  15. Meeho

    Meeho [H]ardness Supreme

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    If a manufacturer can unlock it that it is not a working encryption. They should absolutely not have the ability to do so, court order or not.
     
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  16. Kor

    Kor 2[H]4U

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    And they shouldn't help them again.
     
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  17. Zarathustra[H]

    Zarathustra[H] Official Forum Curmudgeon

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    Agreed. Security isn't security is anyone other than you has the ability to bypass it. Even the manufacturer.

    It shouldn't be up to the manufacturer to refuse access. The devices should be designed in such a way that they cannot be decrypted without the key, and the only person who has that key is you.
     
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  18. carlbme

    carlbme [H]ard|Gawd

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    I'm curious if he had it setup for a fingerprint though. I wonder what the legalities are surrounding trying to use his dead hand to get the fingerprint sensor to unlock the phone.
     
  19. Zarathustra[H]

    Zarathustra[H] Official Forum Curmudgeon

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    I thought the Supreme Court had already ruled on this. You CAN be compelled to unlock a device locked with biometrics, but you cannot be compelled to unlock a device locked with a password, pin or key, as those constitute speech.
     
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  20. STrAYeR

    STrAYeR Limp Gawd

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    Gonna pull another Apple phone scandal no matter how many complain and disagree. When they break into the phone again it will be another finger to the American people, and the rest of the world. We can do what we want.
     
  21. nikage

    nikage n00b

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    Just use his dead thumb? Whats the issue...
     
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  22. mope54

    mope54 [H]ardness Supreme

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    A search warrant would require the police articulating some level of evidence of an accomplice not just allow them to go fishing through someone's property to see what they can find. Warrants aren't so strictly adhered to, but that's the written law on it anyway.
     
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  23. Ocellaris

    Ocellaris Ginger @le, an alcoholic's best friend.

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    If a manufacturer can unlock you phone, anyone can unlock your phone. It’s as simple as that.
     
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  24. FrgMstr

    FrgMstr Just Plain Mean Staff Member

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    Please keep the discussion ON TOPIC. Thanks.
     
  25. cyclone3d

    cyclone3d [H]ardForum Junkie

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    Well, for one, a nice thing about the fingerprint thing on iPhones is that it REQUIRES the pin after restarting the phone BEFORE you can use your fingerprint to unlock the phone.

    As for them getting phone records... why not just get a warrant for the provider? Same for emails.

    What else would be on the phone besides texts and pictures.

    And if they really want texts, they can also get that from the phone records... they show who texts were sent to/received from.

    If they actually wanted to look into this they could do it the old fashioned way.
     
  26. Zarathustra[H]

    Zarathustra[H] Official Forum Curmudgeon

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    I think pretty much all phones with fingerprint sensors do this.

    My Nexus 5x did and My Pixel does.



    Unless messaging clients that send end-to-end encrypted messages were used.
     
  27. Mchart

    Mchart 2[H]4U

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    Doesn't matter - Wouldn't work. After you don't use TouchID for 12 hours (Or it could be 24, I forget which one, I just know it's at max 24) it prompts for the PIN and/or passcode. They would have had to unlock the phone with his dead hand pretty much right then and there to get it to work assuming it hadn't already locked out or he even had touchID setup.

    But honestly if I were ever a detective on the scene w/ a dead perp I can imagine myself trying to unlock the phone with someone's hand before it was completely locked out and pretend I found the phone unlocked on their dead body. Not that I imagine that situation is legal in the slightest.
     
  28. Tiberian

    Tiberian DILLIGAFuck

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    Snowden_Genius.jpg
     
  29. cyclone3d

    cyclone3d [H]ardForum Junkie

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    And I would hope that if I was using that type of client, it required me to put in my password every time it was used.

    Pretty useless to use a client that anybody can get into as long as they have access to your device if it is something that you don't want anybody to see.
     
  30. cyclone3d

    cyclone3d [H]ardForum Junkie

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    And most of that would be available through phone records.

    Voice mails if not deleted by the person are still on the provider's servers. Emails would still be on email provider's servers.

    And if an iPhone AND the person used iCloud to backup the phone.... which is on by default, they can always set up a new phone. Apple does have the ability to reset account passwords.

    So many ways to possibly get the information yet you never hear about the authorities doing those things.. only about how they whine about not being able to get into a phone.
     
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  31. Tiberian

    Tiberian DILLIGAFuck

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    Resetting a password has zero effect on decrypting data that was encrypted using another password.
     
  32. Master_shake_

    Master_shake_ [H]ardForum Junkie

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    Too bad.

    I guess they're screwed then.

    Hey didn't they have a firm who'd unlock phones for them or was that another alphabet agency lie?
     
  33. Nanogrip

    Nanogrip Limp Gawd

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    Aren't most things in phones connected to cloud networking? Maybe they can seek access to his iCloud or something.
     
  34. gxp500

    gxp500 Gawd

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    He wasn't a terrorist, he just had mental health issues, no need to get into his phone...
     
  35. DrBorg

    DrBorg Gawd

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    This guy seems to be the standard whacko intent on killing his ex, or their family, or whatever.

    Maybe the Church folk thought he was a POS because they knew him, and he was indeed a POS.

    Anyone that can shoot innocent people is Obviously deranged, no matter what He thought the deal was.

    These happen so often now it's becoming normal; we'll be wearing body armor to Church. Oh, wait; that's illegal now, for the law-abiding. :)
     
  36. azuza001

    azuza001 Gawd

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    The question is what is on the phone, maybe a lead to something else? You don't know. If there was a safe in his home and you already know he did it you won't expect them to go "well, there may be more evidence in there showing someone else may be involved, but what difference does it make we got the shooter."

    Thats what could be there. Maybe something, maybe nothing. But you don't know if you don't look and you already know he is guilty of quite a bit. This isn't "we think he committed a crime so we want access to his phone to prove it" it's "we know he did it, we want to know who else was he talking to and what they may have known and when"
     
  37. mope54

    mope54 [H]ardness Supreme

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    The Constitution specifically precludes law enforcement from going on fishing expeditions.

    "The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized."
     
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  38. FrgMstr

    FrgMstr Just Plain Mean Staff Member

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    I am sure that is one of the things they want to know FOR SURE. That is how police stuff works. ;) Make no assumptions. Profile yes, assumptions, no.
     
  39. Jim Kim

    Jim Kim 2[H]4U

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    We already know the military inadvertently helped. Kelley’s court-martial conviction should have been reported to the FBI’s National Criminal Information Center database.
     
  40. Archaea

    Archaea [H]ardForum Junkie

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    Just hire John McCafee. ;)
     
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