Cheap device could stall Apple's new USB port lock

Cheap device could stall Apple's new USB port lock

This seems like a flawless solution, but security researchers from ElcomSoft have pointed out a significant shortcoming. There is detailed release note only for the iOS update, which mentions the USB Restricted Mode. However, the company found a flaw in Apple's new implementation of the USB Restricted Mode.

Not only does it require law enforcement to act quickly and to have the requisite hardware on hand, but it only works within the window: once USB Restricted Mode has kicked in, you can't undo it without the passcode.

Unlock iPhone to allow USB accessories to connect when it has been more than an hour since your iPhone was unlocked. Apple says that it added USB Restricted Mode to iOS to increase device security against a known means of hacking, which notably has been used by law enforcement personnel to extract the contents of criminal suspects' phones without their permission.

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If you don't first unlock your password-protected iOS device - or you haven't unlocked and connected it to a USB accessory within the past hour - your iOS device won't communicate with the accessory or computer, and in some cases, it might not charge. The toggle is off by default, and that's how you'll want it in order to use the feature. "Prior to iOS 11.4.1, isolating the iPhone inside a Faraday bag and connecting it to a battery pack would be enough to safely transport it to the lab", Afonin concludes. These bypass the usual restrictions on entering passcodes by attacking through the Lightning port.

A GrayKey box for unlocking Apple mobile devices. As a result, the Lightning port can be kept accessible for an hour past the point of initial seizure by plugging in a Lightning accessory.

It seems as though every new iOS updates brings various complaints from users ranging from performance setbacks to battery life issues, and iOS 11.4 is no exception. However, we discovered a workaround, which happens to work exactly as we suggested back in May. Do you still think that USB Restricted Mode is a good idea? However, Apple had not released the details on its security page at the time of this posting, but expect them to appear sometime soon. Security is always a moving target - we'll have to see how the iOS cracking industry responds to Apple's latest defences.

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