[cryptome] Identifying back doors, attack points, and surveillance mechanisms in iOS devices

  • From: coderman <coderman@xxxxxxxxx>
  • To: "cryptome@xxxxxxxxxxxxx" <cryptome@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>, cpunks <cypherpunks@xxxxxxxxxx>, liberationtech <liberationtech@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Sat, 19 Jul 2014 18:20:18 -0700

doubt this will surprise anyone; iOS intentionally designed to support



"Identifying back doors, attack points, and surveillance mechanisms in
iOS devices"
 by Jonathan Zdziarski


The iOS operating system has long been a subject of interest among the
forensics and law enforcement communities. With a large base of
interest among consumers, it has become the target of many hackers and
criminals alike, with many celebrity thefts (For example, the recent
article “How did Scarlett Johansson's phone get hacked?”) of data
raising awareness to personal privacy. Recent revelations (Privacy
scandal: NSA can spy on smart phone data, 2013 and How the NSA spies
on smartphones including the BlackBerry) exposed the use (or abuse) of
operating system features in the surveillance of targeted individuals
by the National Security Agency (NSA), of whom some subjects appear to
be American citizens. This paper identifies the most probable
techniques that were used, based on the descriptions provided by the
media, and today's possible techniques that could be exploited in the
future, based on what may be back doors, bypass switches, general
weaknesses, or surveillance mechanisms intended for enterprise use in
current release versions of iOS. More importantly, I will identify
several services and mechanisms that can be abused by a government
agency or malicious party to extract intelligence on a subject,
including services that may in fact be back doors introduced by the

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