TECH

John McAfee Explains On Live TV How To Hack Into An iPhone In Just 'Half An Hour'

02/03/2016 11:19 GMT | Updated 02/03/2016 11:59 GMT

Security expert John McAfee has claimed that anyone with the knowledge could hack into the iPhone in just 'half an hour', slamming claims by the FBI that it's impossible without Apple's help.

john mcafee

Everyone's favourite security expert McAfee appeared on live TV to give his opinion on the FBI vs. Apple case in which Apple is refusing to unlock an iPhone.

According to McAffee it's actually worryingly easy to break into a locked iPhone using nothing more than a software and hardware engineer who both have an understanding of how computers work.

McAfee said "I'll probably lose admission to the world hackers' community" for revealing the information but then goes on to explain step-by-step how a person would hack into an iPhone.

McAfee's Guide On How To Hack An iPhone:

  • You need a hardware engineer and a software engineer.
  • The hardware engineer takes the phone apart and it copies the instruction set, which is the iOS and applications [sic] and your memory.
  • Then you run a piece, a program called a disassembler which takes all the ones and zeroes and gives you readable instructions.
  • Then, the coder sits down and he reads through, and what he's looking for is the first access to the keypad, because that's the first thing you're doing when you input your pad.
  • When you see that, then you read the instruction for where in memory this secret code is stored.
  • It takes 'A half an hour'.

the iphone

McAfee went on to call the entire process 'trivial' and bemoaned the FBI saying they 'clearly didn't understand' how to unlock the iPhone.

In response to McAfee's astonishing claims several technology sites and experts have taken to Twitter to pan the expert's claims saying that 'he doesn't know how iPhones work'.

John McAfee's comments were made after Tim Cook published a letter explaining why Apple had refused to help the FBI unlock an iPhone that was being held as evidence.

Apple's CEO claimed that to give the FBI access it would create a 'backdoor' which would allow anyone access to every iPhone.

tim cook

Tim Cook has published an open letter on Apple's website defying the government request.

This would allow the FBI to access the phone belonging to one of the shooters responsible for the San Bernardino attack that took place last year.

In the letter penned 'A message to our customers', Cook explains the specifics of the request that has been made and declares that the US Government have "asked us for something we simply do not have, and something we consider too dangerous to create."

The iPhone has a number of 'self-destruct' mechanisms built in which mean that if an incorrect passcode is entered more than ten times the key which encrypts the entire phone is destroyed.

So far the FBI have been unable to access the phone without them risking the complete destruction of all the data held inside.