Israeli security firm Cellebrite was one of the names involved in the San Bernardino iPhone saga, with the FBI reportedly contacting the company in order to hack the password-protected phone belonging to one of the shooters.
Although the FBI eventually broke into the iPhone with help from an undisclosed group of hackers, Cellebrite also owned technology that could hack password-protected Apple devices, and this caught the attention of authorities across the world.
India, for some reason, wanted to be part of this story too, and the country decided that it didn’t want to get involved in this kind of controversy over an iPhone used for illegal activities, so it was looking into ways to make sure that it would be capable of breaking into locked phones.
And according to a report from The Economic Times, India is very close to buying iPhone hacking software from Cellebrite, which could be then used to break into any device that authorities might need to check for evidence of criminal activities.
Lot of Locked iPhones in India
The country’s Forensic Science Laboratory (FSL) is currently in advanced talks over an acquisition, the aforementioned source adds, and if everything goes according to plan, a deal should be reached very soon.
“We are likely to have the technology within a month or so. India will become a global hub for cases where law enforcement is unable to break into phones,” a senior FSL official was quoted as saying.
What’s interesting is that, using this technology, India plans to hack iPhones not only for itself but also for other parties that are willing to pay the price. Becoming a global hub for breaking into phones could thus mean that India might be aiming to be the go-to place for hacking a password-protected device should authorities in another state need assistance.
The biggest question, however, is why would anyone contact India to hack an iPhone when they can very well get in touch with Cellebrite as well, but it’s believed that FSL could get the exclusive rights over this hacking software as part of the deal. More information will probably be provided at a later time when an agreement is reached.