Restricting Access on Locked Phones

Doesn't seem to be confirmed yet by Apple, but lots of stories about Apple restricting the Lighting > USB connection on locked phones after 7 days. What this means is that if someone takes your phone, but doesn't have your passcode, after seven days they will no longer be able to connect that phone to a physical device and copy data off the file system.

The file system is all encrypted, but while it sits on device, it's protected by the non-trivial hardware and software protections that Apple has woven throughout their hardware. If you move that data, even encrypted off the device, you still have a math problem to solve, but you can also solve that math problem at your leisure, without worrying about whatever is going on in the Secure Enclave, or any sort of ten tries and the phone deletes itself protocol.

Completely independent of your politics, or opinions on government rights to search phones and devices. This shows just how serious Apple is taking the stewardship of our privacy that we have all given them by moving our entire lives to these pocket computers.

In a past life I worked on game console security a little bit, and the big console manufacturers and silicon guys took this seriously. It was however serious because there was a lot of money attached to keeping the platform secure to protect the content. It had the side effect of preventing the execution of third party code, and that was nice, but it was a side effect.

If Apple moves forward with this, it's one of the first times we have seen a company of this size take a visible, proactive restrictive step to establish privacy and security of your personal data as a feature. There is no other reason to do this, it's not preventing piracy, or enhancing user convenience. If I was a government or law enforcement entity, I'd read this as the most powerful tech company in the world is not messing around.