Thursday, September 29, 2016 [Tweets] [Favorites]

Apple’s iMessage Metadata Logs

Juli Clover:

Conversations in the Messages app feature end-to-end encryption that makes the content of the messages impossible to decipher, but according to documentation found by The Intercept, Apple tracks who its customers send iMessages to and is able to hand that information over to law enforcement when compelled to do so through a court order.

When a text message is sent to someone, the Messages app pings Apple’s servers to see if the person has an iPhone or iPad in an effort to determine whether to send a message via iMessage or SMS. Each ping records date, time, number, and IP address, all of which is kept in a log that Apple says it stores for 30 days.

John Gruber:

It shouldn’t be surprising that Messages does a lookup on each phone number and email address you attempt to send an iMessage to. If there wasn’t some sort of directory lookup, how would the messages get routed? Here’s Apple’s own description, from their iOS Security Guide[…]

Rene Ritchie:

My understanding is that, at some point, Apple’s iMessage engineers decided they needed to keep a metadata log in order to detect and fix problems with iMessage dispatch.

[…]

As a result of keeping the log, if presented by a court order, Apple has to turn it over. Same with any log kept by any company.

1 Comment

[…] Using Google Cloud Platform, iOS 5 and iCloud, Apple Is Trying to Make iMessages More Private, Apple’s iMessage Metadata Logs, Can Apple Read Your […]

Stay up-to-date by subscribing to the Comments RSS Feed for this post.

Leave a Comment