Israeli forensics company Cellebrite – which has gained a reputation for unlocking mobile devices like the iPhone to obtain personal data without the passcode or biometrics – claims it can now unlock any iOS device running up to iOS 12.3.
The firm boasted of its capability in a tweet posted on Friday, which promoted UFED Premium, the latest version of its Universal Forensic Extraction Device.
Cellebrite is proud to introduce #UFED Premium! An exclusive solution for law enforcement to unlock and extract data from all iOS and high-end Android devices. To learn more, click here: https://t.co/WHsaDxzoXz pic.twitter.com/BSixEkyAuL
— Cellebrite (@Cellebrite_UFED) June 14, 2019
On its UFED web page, Cellebrite discusses the tool’s ability to obtain forensic data from any iOS device dating back to iOS 7. The tool can also glean data from Android devices made by Samsung, Huawei, LG, and Xiaomi.
The firm says UFED Premium is “the only on-premise solution for law enforcement agencies to unlock and extract crucial mobile phone evidence from all iOS and high-end Android devices.”
If it works as advertised, the tool will allow authorities to gain access to data stored on the majority of smartphones currently available.
Apple is involved in a ongoing virtual chess game with companies like Cellebrite, which examine Apple’s iOS for flaws and other vulnerabilities that allow them to gain access to data on a locked iOS device. Apple continually strives to plug such holes to protect the privacy of its users.
Cellebrite first gained public notice when a report said it was aiding the FBI in their attempt to unlock an iPhone 5c used by San Bernardino shooter Syed Farook, after Apple refused to aid the FBI in unlocking the device. While it turned out Cellebrite didn’t actually aid the FBI in unlocking the device, it has since worked with law enforcement agencies to unlock iOS devices.