The case between Apple and FBI went Furious over the last couple of months, Columbia district court ruled that the FBI can keep hidden the name and merchant of a hacking tool that used to break into the iPhone of the San Bernardino shooter, Rizwan Farook.

The case got international media attention when the FBI asked Apple for help to search the shooter’s iPhone, which was locked and encrypted.But Apple refused to help unlock the phone, arguing the device’s encryption could not be defeated.

The with the secret helped government FBI agents to get to the phone’s contents of Syed Farook, who with his wife Tashfeen Malik killed 14 individuals in San Bernardino, California in December 2015 of in a mass shooting.

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FBI argues that revealing the identity will allow adversaries to use the existing technology and vulnerabilities to build a new encryption technology that thwarts FBI ability to use the tool. Also, FBI said it may drive cyber attacks against the company.

The FBI contends that disclosing the purchase price may dissuade future contractors from working with the FBI, for fear that the FBI would publicize information about their own financial transactions.

“It is logical and plausible that the vendor may be less capable than the FBI of protecting its proprietary information in the face of a cyber-attack,” said the court. “The FBI’s conclusion that releasing the name of the vendor to the general public could put the vendor’s systems, and thereby crucial information about the technology, at risk of incursion, is a reasonable one.”

The judge concurred with the FBI, which referred to national security concerns, with foreign intelligence agencies might get an understanding of the FBI’s abilities. A full copy is available here.


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