FBI ends fight with Apple, uses mystery method to break into gunman’s iPhone

WASHINGTON (WATE) – After weeks of controversy, the FBI has dropped a lawsuit against Apple to allow access to the data on the San Bernardino shooter’s iPhone.

According to paperwork filed with the United State of America United State District Court the government has now successfully accessed the data on Syed Rizwan Farook’s iPhone and no longer requires assistance from Apple. Last Monday, federal prosecutors with the FBI said “an outside party” came forward over the weekend and showed the FBI a possible method to access the encrypted phone.

The government did not identify the third party or explain what the proposed method entailed. FBI Director James Comey told the House Judiciary Committee in sworn testimony earlier this month that agency investigators had approached even the National Security Agency for help but did not have success.

Apple has said in its filings that the government did not exhaust all its options, and lawmakers have criticized the FBI for not doing more to try to crack the iPhone itself before seeking Apple’s help. Prosecutors have argued that the phone used by Farook probably contains evidence of the Dec. 2 attack in which the county food inspector and his wife, Tashfeen Malik, slaughtered 14 at a holiday luncheon attended by many of his work colleagues. The two were killed in a police shootout hours later.

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