Telly Locking Tuesday


Earlier this year, at the height of a very public battle between the FBI and Apple over whether the computer maker would help decrypt a mass murderer’s locked iPhone, it appeared that a little-known, 17-year-old Israeli firm named Cellebrite Mobile Synchronization might finally get its moment in the spotlight.

After weeks of insisting that only Apple could help the feds unlock the phone of San Bernardino killer Syed Rizwan Farook, the Justice Department suddenly revealed that a third party had provided a way to get into the device. Speculation swirled around the identity of that party until an Israeli newspaper reported it was Cellebrite.

It turns out the company was not the third party that helped the FBI. A Cellebrite representative said as much during a panel discussion at a high-tech crimes conference in Minnesota this past April, according to a conference attendee who spoke with The Intercept. And sources who spoke with the Washington Post earlier this year also ruled out Cellebrite’s involvement, though Yossi Carmil, one of Cellebrite’s CEOs, declined to comment on the matter when asked by The Intercept.

But the attention around the false report obscured a bigger, more interesting truth: Cellebrite’s researchers have become, over the last decade, the FBI’s go-to hackers for mobile forensics. Many other federal agencies also rely on the company’s expertise to get into mobile devices. Cellebrite has contracts with the FBI going back to 2009, according to federal procurement records, but also with the Drug Enforcement Administration, the Secret Service, and DHS’s Customs and Border Protection. U.S. state and local law enforcement agencies use Cellebrite’s researchers and tools as well, as does the U.S. military, to extract data from phones seized from suspected terrorists and others in battle zones.

The company is poised to seize a prominent and somewhat ominous place in the public imagination; just as Apple has come to be seen as a warrior for digital protection and privacy against overreaching government surveillance, Cellebrite is emerging as its law-and-order counterpart, endeavoring to build tools to break through the barriers Apple and other phone makers erect to protect data.

@ TI


About Den

Always in search of interesting things to post. Armed with knowledge and dangerous with the ladies.
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12 Responses to Telly Locking Tuesday

  1. Den says:

    You cannot hide from the overreach of the Neo-Fascist regime. Now it is the terrorist and miscreants, tomorrow, everyone under the scrutiny of prying eyes. Of course this does not matter to the stupid masses who are not paying attention anyway, off in their own little worlds being stupid while their free speech rights are being taken away by faceless, un-elected bureaucrats working tirelessly to turn this county into a nation of simple-minded stooges of the proletariat class.

    Bend over and cough, or else.


  2. micki says:

    …rabbit, rabbit.


  3. Den says:

    A day late for Halloween but how bout a creepy old house tour?


    • Den says:

      Might want to Mute


    • º¿carol says:

      I’m glad I came here after midnight so I could watch that video, I LOVED it! I found it on YouTube and posted it on my FB page for my friends. I love drones, glad there is one sort of in the family. Next summer I hope to have Jon back over fly the thing low and take video of my place. A walking tour. I love the still photos he took, both Bob and I used them as our screen saver. I never get tired of looking at our place from the air.


  4. Den says:

    Now where i I put those LLamas again?

    Oh here:


  5. º¿carol says:

    Took Bob to an ear doctor today because his hearing in his let ear has deteriorated over the summer. After they tested his ears the doctor concluded Bob has a brain tumor, a benign one, slow-growing. MRI, he said, but Bob won’t do that. What’s the point? With his other health problems it would be a waste of time and money, so it will just remain on his growing list of annoying health problems he has to live with.


  6. Den says:

    Hey Bob, welcome to the bitterly-aging class of Old Fartdom of which I too am a card-carrying member. It doesn’t do any good to complain, no one cares because they are all doing the same thing, aging ungracefully. At least you have awesome home support to help you get through the medical shit-barrage they call Modern Medicine, hang in pal!


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