Feb. 16, 2021
Documents recently filed in the Southern District of New York indicate the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) may posses an investigative tool which allows them to intercept encrypted messages sent on the Signal app.
Signal have gained widespread popularity as Big Tech has grown more fierce in campaign against free speech, but court documents indicate Signal may not be as secure as many hoped.
According to documents filed by the Department of Justice and first obtained by Forbes, showed screenshots of Signal messages between men allegedly discussing an illegal weapons trade and attempted.
The screenshots reportedly showed metadata indicating that Signal had been decrypted on their phone when the device was in a certain state called “partial AFU,” which stands for “after first unlock.” In this state, iPhones are more vulnerable to having their data extracted.
Vladimir Katalov, founder of the Russian forensics company ElcomSoft, told Forbes he believes GrayKey was the tool that the FBI used in the gun-trafficking case.
“It uses some very advanced approach using hardware vulnerabilities,” Katalov said.
Read the court documents here: Complaint & Letter.