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    FBI Struggled, but India Ready for iPhone Encryption Challenge

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    Varun Bhatia
    Varun Bhatia May 19, 2016

    Apple’s fight with the FBI came to an end when the government managed to crack the iPhone without Apple’s help. Cellebrite, an Israeli tech firm, had helped the FBI, according to a report by USA Today.

    Seeing how digital encryption largely falls out of legal purview, and given that technology is completely taking over our lives, it wouldn’t be surprising if such an issue arose in India as well.

    Therefore, it’s good to see the Indian Government being proactive and addressing the matter before it even crops up.

    “Smartphones including phones by Apple employ strong encryption to secure the data stored and to protect the communication. Such Encryption technologies pose challenges to Law Enforcement Agencies throughout the world including India,” the Telecom Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said in a statement.

    Taking note of the widespread media coverage of the Apple-FBI battle, Prasad said that the issue affected India as much as the US.

    In order to regulate the cyberspace, he said, the “government regularly interacts with all stakeholders to address the issues and implement solutions”. He acknowledged and emphasised the need to privacy, but was wary of the rising threats of cyber-terrorism at the same time.

    Consequently, the Indian government is investing heavily in developing countermeasures. Special attention is being paid to IT and allied services, where new, secure technologies are being developed to keep pace with the rapid technological growth of the telecom industry.

    As part of this programme, a tool for Mobile forensics has been developed, which handles smartphones including Apple phones,” he clarified.

    While he denied any theories of the Government possessing a universal back door for iPhones, he did hint that if and when a threat surfaced, the government would be well equipped to handle the issue.

    India is the world’s largest exporter of IT engineers and software developers. This claim by Prasad shouldn’t come as a surprise. We’ve always had the intellectual capability to be world leaders in IT, it was only a matter of lacking political willpower. Now that requirement also looks fulfilled, and there’s no stopping us now!

    Source: ToI

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