Earlier this year, Apple experienced several security issues with their popular iMessage contacts software that potentially leaked photos and contacts.
The tech giant quickly patched those problems, but their newest iOS10 update brings another privacy concern. David Lumb, Contributing Editor at Engadget, explains how Apple is now capable of logging into your iMessage contacts and even sharing them with the police.
All of your iMessage conversation metadata automatically gets logged into Apple’s servers. The information within the data – time, date, frequency, and even location information – remains encrypted and out of sight. However, Apple could be compelled to turn over those records to law enforcement by court order.
When an iOS user types in a recipient to begin a text conversation, their iPhone pings servers to determine if the other contact uses iMessage. Apple allegedly logs every one of these unseen network requests. Much like phone logs, investigators can legally request these records and Apple would be obliged to comply. In 2013, Apple insisted that user messages sent through iMessage were completely encrypted from end-to-end, but they made no mention about metadata. The company has since confirmed that they fully comply with subpoenas and other legal requests for these logs, but they will continue to keep message content private.