Well, he did a lot. Since the launch of FaceID last year, there has been a lot of controversy over how to misuse it.
Recently, a suspect who was looted by the FBI was forced to unlock his iPhone X with FaceID. Then the officers searched for evidence on his phone. It is the first case of its kind to use FaceID technology to detect evidence.
The accused, Grant Michalsky, 28, was charged with possession of child pornography. The officers had a search warrant and gathered all the evidence necessary to prove his guilt.
The research provided them with strong evidence including a Kik Messenger chat of the suspect in which he discussed the abuse of minors according to the affidavit account.
It is also revealed that the suspect also had a conversation with Knight (a secret agent trying to convince the suspect to speak up). The advertisement he made on his Craiglist with the title “Taboo” also raised suspicions.
Not many clues found as the device was locked with a passcode. While the police were equipped with tools that could bypass the passcode, the FBI needed a second search warrant to conduct a more thorough search of all of its belongings.
Traditionally, it is legal to use a person’s face as evidence or to obtain evidence. But never before had we had so many people whose faces became the key to unlocking so much of their private information.
As mentioned earlier, this isn’t the first time law enforcement agencies have messed around with hi-tech features. We’ve seen cases where these agencies have used the fingerprints of the dead to unlock their biometric systems.
It finally happened. The feds forced the Apple iPhone X owner to unlock their devices with their faces.
A child abuse investigation exposed by Forbes includes the first known case in which law enforcement has used Apple Face ID to unlock a suspect’s iPhone. This is by any police agency anywhere in the world, not just in America.
It happened on August 10, when the FBI searched the home of Grant Michaelsky, a 28-year-old resident of Columbus, Ohio, who would be charged later that month with receiving and possessing child pornography. With a search warrant in hand, a federal investigator told Michalsky to put his face in front of the phone, which he duly did. This allowed the agent to view the suspect’s conversations and photos online and anything else he deemed worth investigating.
The case marks another important moment in the ongoing battle between law enforcement and technology providers, as the former tries to break the myriad security protections put in place by the latter. Since the fight between the world’s most valuable company and the San Bernardino FBI over access to the iPhone in 2016, Forbes has been tracking the different ways in which cops have tried to break Apple’s protection.
In the beginning, there were several cases in which suspects were asked to unlock iPhones with their fingerprints, via Apple Touch ID biometric login. The same method was then used on the dead. Earlier this year, this post published GrayKey, a $ 15,000 to $ 30,000 tool that can crack passcodes of the latest iOS models, including the iPhone X. Another contractor, Cellebrite in Israel, has announced similar services.
Now Face ID is used for the same purpose. While the Federalists did get a warrant, and it appeared they did everything within the limits of the law, there are still concerns about the use of such tactics.
“Traditionally, it is legal to use a person’s face as evidence or to obtain evidence,” said Jerome Greco, employee attorney at Legal Aid. “But we never had so many people whose faces were the key to unlocking so much of their private information.”
When David Knight, the FBI special agent, got hold of the Michelsky cell and asked the suspect to put his face in front of the device, and immediately unlock it, there were various interesting items inside, according to an affidavit of a search warrant for this iPhone. X.
There have been conversations about the chatting app Kik Messenger where users discussed abuse of minors, according to the affidavit account. Knight writes that he later discovered that Michalsky had previously used Kik to speak with a secretive officer posing as a father interested in child sex. According to a previous Forbes investigation, Kik had to deal with a slew of child exploitation cases involving its platform, and it promised to spend millions of dollars on solving the problem.