The government of the United States is set to hire its go-to hackers to break into the Android operating system. According to Forbes, the Fed is will be hiring Grayshift, its preferred hackers-for-hire company to crack Google’s Android.
David Miles, CEO of Grayshift, revealed in a speech that it will be working on other devices. At a law enforcement and forensics affair, Miles asserted that Grayshift will still be focusing on iOS. However, Google’s OS will also be a priority.
In a previous report by Forbes, the hackers-for-hire company asserted that it could hack pin codes for all iOS devices. According to the firm, they developed a hacking tool called GrayKey to crack modern iPhone passcodes.
With this, the company has worked with various government agencies. This includes the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the Immigration Customs & Enforcement (ICE)
Reportedly, Apple acted to impede Grayshift’s progress by implementing various hardware and software upgrades. With these actions, it seems that the firm has a degree of success in cracking iOS.
Miles remarks that after cracking iOS, the “most logical step” is to move toward Android devices, including Google and Samsung.
Apple’s devices have the reputation of being safe when it comes to security. While Miles was able to penetrate the security measured placed by Apple, he has qualms about cracking Android.
According to the CEO, Android may be as difficult to hack as Apple’s iOS. This is because of the fragmented nature of the Android ecosystem, as devices using the OS varies widely. Various companies also manufacture Android devices.
No pin codes required
One of the most illuminating revelations about the speech is that the GrayKey hacking tool does not need pin codes. This means that the tool can give unauthorized access to any iOS device without authorization keys.
In fact, the tool can extract “almost everything” even when locked and was unlocked only once during an uptime period. The company can also access text messages, iPhone’s Keychain and images.
However, Miles revealed that GrayKey cannot access several encrypted segments of Apple devices. This includes email storage, location details and health information.
While it is sure that the tool can extract sensitive info, it is uncertain whether it can access specific data. These include messaging applications such as WhatsApp.
Meanwhile, the latest iPhone models have addressed the company’s methods.