January 1, 2014

"Apple denies it helped build the NSA's iPhone backdoor."

"Either [the NSA] have a huge collection of exploits that work against Apple products, meaning they are hoarding information about critical systems that American companies produce, and sabotaging them, or Apple sabotaged it themselves."

Via commenter Lemondog.

Mobile phones have transformed our world by seducing and delighting us. We installed bugging and tracking devices into our most intimate places, into ourselves. We did, willingly, what we could have resisted if we'd only known. Now, knowing, we can throw away these devices, but we won't. We love them too much.

I wanted to find a little video clip from "Breaking Bad," showing one of the many times a character on that show broke a cell phone. Of course, it wasn't an iPhone. Good luck twisting an iPhone in half with your bare hands. On that show, they always had the old clamshell-style phones, which are good for the drama/comedy of snapping open or shut or twisting into an untraceable shambles. I did find this clip showing "What Walter White Sold Before Meth" and I'll let you write the punchline for this post:

[Defective video removed.]

"It accelerated absorption of pure oxygen...." Pure oxygen. I love Walter's connection to purity. His meth was 99.1% pure.


Ron said...

Clearly he's moved up "H" to "M".

surfed said...

Cell phones are definitely a love/hate relationship.

Bruce Hayden said...

One thing to keep in mind is that iPhones were not designed for security. IT person in the law firm I was in was able to show how fast she could hack an iPhone from a couple of feet away. It was only when we could get much more robust security approved for the Apple store, that she would allow iPhones to join the Blackberries on the firm network. Still have the software - uses encryption, and a much more robust password system. Android phones were apparently worse.

Darury said...

On that show, they always had the old clamshell-style phones, which are good for the drama/comedy of snapping open or shut or twisting into an untraceable shambles.

Here's my thinking: The reason questionable characters use those phones on TV is simple fact, they are cheapest burner option available. You can buy them for $20-30 at Wal-Mart with 200 minutes. Just because you're a drug lord with millions of dollars in a storage unit doesn't mean you want to throw away $600 on an iPhone every time you think the cops are on to you.

Bob Boyd said...

Walter White went from crack to meth.

EDH said...

Speaking of the "backdoor".

Bottoms Up: Methamphetamine Toxicity from an Unusual Route

Methamphetamine (MA) use is becoming commonplace, and emergency physicians (EPs) are seeing patients with abuse-associated complications. Previous reports have described inhalational and intravenous routes. We present the second case of rectal MA abuse in the literature. Trans-rectal use is important for EPs to consider because ongoing absorption of massive quantities may be averted upon detection. Additionally, trans-rectal abuse risks anorectal trauma and vascular necrosis with colonic perforation.

Kev said...

(the other kev)

Preparation H. Now in the high-intensity blue form.

Joe said...

My gut feeling is that Apple didn't design the backdoor for NSA, it was largely incompetence, but to the extent they designed any backdoor, they designed it for themselves and NSA exploited it.

Mitch H. said...

Drug dealers prefer to use burners, which usually are cheap clamshell devices. Makes them harder to track with wiretaps if you're only using them for a couple weeks. A lot of business about this fact in the third and later seasons of the Wire which suffered somewhat from the fact that the showrunners were drawing on their decades-old reporting history but trying to keep the setting contemporary. Made for some technologically risible conceits.