CIA spent years to hack iPhone, iPad, say new leaked Snowden documents

American journalist Glenn Greenwald who’s running The Intercept publication has shared more shocking documents obtained from the ex-NSA spy Edward Snowden.

The latest revelation is about how for decade, the CIA security researchers tried to hack and penetrate the security of Apple devices such as iPhone and iPad.

The leaked documents show CIA and other U.S. government security researchers distributed backdoors on App store by developing their own version of XCode, an Apple software app development tool. 

MUST READ: Why FBI is so concerned about Apple and Google’s smartphone encryption plans?


The Intercept has been publishing top secret documents obtained from Edward Snowden. The latest documents expose CIA’s activities to hack Apple from 2006 to 2013. However, it is not clear if CIA was able to achieve its target of bypassing Apple’s powerful encryption system protecting users from hackers and spy agencies. 

CIA and other security researchers used to share their findings during a stop secret annual gathering called  “Jamboree.”

The agency was keen to get into iPhone soon after its first ever launch in 2006.

The documents also reveal role of British Intelligence agency researchers who helped the CIA to breach “secure communications products, both foreign and domestic” including Google Android smartphones.

In November 2014, FBI‘s chief Mr. Comey said he is ‘very concerned’ about the whole encryption thing in Apple and Google smartphones after both companies strengthened encryption methods for data stored in their smartphones.

“What concerns me about this is companies marketing something expressly to allow people to place themselves beyond the law,” he said.

Although Apple was in the list of companies being spied by the NSA, its CEO Cook openly denied working with any government agency to share customer’s private data. 

“I want to be absolutely clear that we have never worked with any government agency from any country to create a backdoor in any of our products or services,” Cook wrote in his open letter. “We have also never allowed access to our servers. And we never will.”

At the moment CIA hasn’t said anything about the report. World leaders including British Prime Minister David Cameron and President Obama have shown their concerns over smartphone companies strengthening encryption methods for data stored in their smartphones as it may not help the security agencies to track terrorists. 

Via Reuters | The Intercept | 

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