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Tech & Science Whether Apple or Google: Is there a back door into your phone’s online backups?

17:25  26 january  2020
17:25  26 january  2020 Source:   usatoday.com

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Apple paid Qualcomm billions to settle and dropped all of its lawsuits, as the company instead wanted to clear the air and do business. Whether Apple or Google : Is there a back door into your phone ’ s online backups ?

The question is whether the BoE will join central bank peers in cutting interest rates. Economic growth and inflation took a hit from three-and-a-half years of Brexit uncertainty so a recent string of dismal data and Whether Apple or Google : Is there a back door into your phone ’ s online backups ?

When the company behind your smartphone’s software commits to backing up your device’s data online, how far should it go to have your back?

A report Tuesday by Reuters on Apple’s iCloud backups brought fresh attention to this question. Citing “six sources familiar with the matter,” reporter Joseph Menn wrote that the firm “dropped plans to let iPhone users fully encrypt backups of their devices in the company’s iCloud service after the FBI complained that the move would harm investigations.”

Exclusive: Apple dropped plan for encrypting backups after FBI complained - sources

  Exclusive: Apple dropped plan for encrypting backups after FBI complained - sources Exclusive: Apple dropped plan for encrypting backups after FBI complained - sourcesThe tech giant's reversal, about two years ago, has not previously been reported. It shows how much Apple has been willing to help U.S. law enforcement and intelligence agencies, despite taking a harder line in high-profile legal disputes with the government and casting itself as a defender of its customers' information.

Back It Up in the iClouds. Your easiest option, and Apple ’ s first recommendation, is to back your phone up to iCloud. The process is pretty simple Just dive into iTunes preferences, click on the Devices tab, and you’ll see a list of every backup for your devices. As long as the one you need is

If your phone shows " Back up to Google Drive" at the top of the screen, make sure it' s toggled on, OR. Automatic backup . Option 2: Back up via USB. This means plugging your Android phone into your You can back up a Samsung phone just like you do any Android phone , but there are some

What that means is that while the contents of your iPhone remain encrypted on Apple’s servers, you don’t have the only key to unlock them – the Cupertino, California, tech giant also has one.

The company had announced intentions for full encryption of iCloud backups as far back as 2016. Apple did not comment to Reuters about the apparent reversal, nor did it respond to a USA TODAY query sent Wednesday.

Should you worry about Apple (or an adversary infiltrating its iCloud backup system) being able to unlock your backup for you? Maybe not: Without that fallback, forgetting the password to your backups means losing them forever.

Apple iCloud backups

Apple does allow fully-encrypted local backups to your Mac via iTunes or, in macOS Catalina, the Finder, reminding users in a support note that “there's no way to recover your iTunes backups without this password.”

Google designed an envelope you can use to hide your phone from yourself

  Google designed an envelope you can use to hide your phone from yourself The envelope only lets you use the phone’s dialerToday, Google launched three new experimental apps to help you use your phone less as part of its Digital Wellbeing initiative, including one that actually has you seal up your phone in a phone-sized paper envelope (via Android Police). It sounds similar to the pouches some artists require fans to put their phones into at concerts, except it’s something you make at home — and Google’s envelope should at least let you make a call, if you need to.

iCloud backups include nearly all data and settings stored on your device. iCloud backups don't include: Data that ' s already stored in iCloud, like Contacts iCloud Music Library and App Store content (If it' s still available in the iTunes, App, or Apple Books store, you can tap to re-download your

First up , you'll need to find out whether or not your iPhone is carrier-unlocked (also known SIM-unlocked or GSM-unlocked). If this isn't the case, your phone would refuse to connect to Google Fi' s network, even if it' s technically capable of doing so. If you bought your iPhone from Apple directly

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos apparently learned this the hard way after the reported hack of his iPhone via a malware-loaded WhatsApp message from Saudi Arabian crown prince Mohammed bin Salman. Investigators Bezos hired could not inspect his local backups without his lost password.

(Many users may also prefer local backup because iCloud only offers 5 gigabytes of free storage – a limit that became inadequate years ago. You can buy more starting at 50 GB for 99 cents a month, or you can ease iCloud’s burden by using the free Google Photos to back up your iPhone pictures.)

“I would certainly want Apple to both encrypt my backups and keep a copy of the key,” emailed Philip R. Reitinger, president and CEO of the Global Cyber Alliance, a Washington trade group. He put in a vote for Apple letting users opt into full encryption: “Apple keeping the key unless the user says otherwise.”

Google Android backups

Google’s Android operating system, however, has offered end-to-end encryption of backups since the 2018 release of Android Pie. The key to this system is your phone’s screen-lock code, pattern or password; forget that and your backups are bust.

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From there , navigate to Apple Computer -> MobileSync -> Backup . Update May 18, 2018: There is now a version of iTunes available in the Microsoft Store as well as from the Apple website. If you installed iTunes from the Microsoft Store for Windows 10, then your backups are stored in a slightly

Apple offers a few backup methods. Windows users can back up their phone through iTunes; those running macOS Catalina can use the Finder. There are pros and cons for each method. Using iTunes or Finder means you don't have to rely on the cloud, though it also mean you can only restore

Older Android releases lack this backup security. The Mountain View, California, firm did not answer a question sent Wednesday about how many current Android devices run Pie or 10.

But Apple, not Google, has been the target of complaints from the Trump administration for not helping law enforcement. In January, for instance, attorney general William Barr denounced Apple for not giving “any substantive assistance” to investigators of a Saudi pilot’s murder of three people at a naval base in Pensacola, Florida.

Apple pushed back against that, saying the Federal Bureau of Investigation had only requested its help with the shooter’s locked iPhone a week before Barr’s remarks.

Civil libertarians object to Barr demanding that firms like Apple weaken the encryption protecting customers’ data.

Wrote Lindsey Barrett, a fellow at Georgetown University Law Center’s Institute for Public Representation: “His blustering on this issue is willfully disingenuous and ignores what privacy and cryptography experts have been telling law enforcement for years: that strong encryption doesn't ‘protect criminals,’ it protects the privacy and safety of everyone.”

Rob Pegoraro is a tech writer based out of Washington, D.C. To submit a tech question, e-mail Rob at rob@robpegoraro.com. Follow him on Twitter at @robpegoraro.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Whether Apple or Google: Is there a back door into your phone’s online backups?

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