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Apple says it will allow iCloud backups to be fully encrypted

By Joseph Menn

08 Dec 2022 · 3 min read

Editor's Note

Apple's decision to offer fully encrypted backups in iCloud is a victory for privacy advocates, the Washington Post reports. However, multiple governments are likely to object on security grounds.

After years of delay under government pressure, Apple said Wednesday that it will offer fully encrypted backups of photos, chat histories and most other sensitive user data in its cloud storage system worldwide, putting them out of reach of most hackers, spies and law enforcement.

Apple has benefited for more than a decade from a perception that it does more than other phone and computer companies to safeguard privacy, including its use of end-to-end encryption for iMessages between Apple devices. Those can only be read on the devices, not by Apple, a phone service provider or police with a warrant.

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