End-to-End iCloud Encryption Could Be a Security Game Changer vice.com

Jason Koebler, Vice:

“For years we’ve had to deal with the fact that an entire copy of our phone lives on a server that’s outside of our control. Now the data on that server is under our control. That’s really all that’s changed here,” Matthew Green, associate professor at Johns Hopkins University, told Motherboard in an online chat. “I think it’s an extremely important development.”

In my tests, the process of setting up Advanced Data Protection was a bit buggy, but if the system delivers what it promises, iCloud’s new security add-on could be a game changer for people who have avoided cloud backup tools due to the lack of end-to-end encryption.

There are two reasons to mistrust cloud storage providers. The first is that other people, unauthorized by users, could be able to access data they store; Advanced Data Protection solves that problem. The second reason is that users will be unable to access something for they are authorized due to a bug, systems failure, or data loss.1

Do not get me wrong; I am impressed with the surprise release and rapid rollout of Advanced Data Protection. It is worth pointing out that appears to include availability in China, contrary to comments from some speculators at the feature’s announcement. I feel more secure knowing iCloud Drive operates more like an extension of my personal devices. Where I would like to see progress next is in ongoing stability and quality improvements. iCloud is a higher quality service than it used to be, but it can be better.

  1. A third fear is the possibility of irreversible changes made by others, something which was apparently possible in iCloud Drive↥︎