Apple was recently part of a pitched legal battle with the U.S. government over whether it would have to create special software that would allow law enforcement to break into the locked iPhone of the San Bernardino shooter. Now the Justice Department has ended their legal action against the company because they somehow unlocked the phone themselves.
According to the Associated Press, the government requested that the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California vacate the order. Their filing provided no detail of how they were able to break into the phone. Apple and the Justice Department were scheduled to face off in court over this dispute, until the government suddenly postponed the decision, saying they wanted to test this mystery method. Apple had also said that they would want to know about this method if it worked. Without a scheduled trial waiting in the wings, Apple no longer possesses the ability to legally compel the FBI to disclose anything.
Apple was refusing to break into the San Bernardino shooter’s phone because of the civil liberties precedent it would set. It seems like that right could be threatened anyway, only we won’t be able to easily find out how.
(via Associated Press)