FBI Paid Nearly $1 Million to Unlock Terrorist’s iPhone

After two Islamic terrorists launched their attack on a Christmas party in 2015, the FBI tried to appeal to Apple to unlock the iPhone that belonged to one of the terrorists. Apple denied the FBI’s request due to their promise of customer privacy. They also refused to develop the software to unlock the iPhone. A couple months later, the FBI reported that they had managed to unlock the iPhone and gained access to the information they sought. Now we know how they did it.

Following the terrorist attack in San Bernardino in December of 2015, there was a lot of controversy over whether Apple should help the FBI open one of the terrorist’s phones. Ultimately, the FBI found a private company that helped crack it open, but we had no idea how much that effort cost the government. Until now.

As it turns out, it cost the FBI roughly $900,000 to hack the locked iPhone. The revelation went largely unnoticed during last Wednesday’s Senate Judiciary Committee hearing with FBI Director James Comey. But by Friday the Associated Press realized that Senator Diane Feinstein had inadvertently given out the number.

Apple said they didn’t have the ability to unlock one of their secure iPhones and they said that it would take too long to try to develop the software needed to unlock someone’s iPhone. However, it didn’t take long for hackers to gain access to the phone and you can’t blame the hackers if the FBI paid them $900,000 to hack into the iPhone.

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