CNN – Apple says its new mobile operating system puts text messages, e-mails, photos and other data out of reach of police – even if they show up with a search warrant.
In a blog post, Apple says that IOS 8, which began rolling out Wednesday, has a new encryption that will no longer allow the company to bypass a customers’ passcode to access the data.
“So it’s not technically feasible for us to respond to government warrants for the extraction of this data from devices in their possession running IOS 8,” it said.
Earlier versions of Apple’s operating system allowed the company to bypass the password, it said.
And that’s still true for rival operating systems. For instance, AT&T can tap into android phones to perform customer service.
But it’s not foolproof. The protection disappears if customers back up the information on their phone and copy it to the iCloud service, because Apple will comply with warrants to turn over information on its servers.
Plus, the protection only applies to what lives on your phone: text messages, photos, voice recordings, etc. The government can still (and does) pummel Google and Yahoo to get your emails. And your mobile provider will give up your call records.
And if you sync your iPhone with iTunes, backing up your phone’s files to your computer, then police can grab those files from your laptop — No PIN code is necessary.