Apple ordered to help FBI hack San Bernardino terrorist’s phone

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WASHINGTON (AP) — A U.S. magistrate has ordered Apple to help the Obama administration hack into an iPhone belonging to one of the shooters in the San Bernardino, California, terrorist attack.

The ruling by Sheri Pym on Tuesday requires Apple to supply highly specialized software to the FBI that can be loaded onto the phone to cripple a security encryption feature that erases data after too many unsuccessful unlocking attempts.

Federal prosecutors told the judge they can’t access a county-owned work phone used by Syed Farook because they don’t know his passcode.

By default, Apple has encrypted its iPhones to allow them only to be accessed using a passcode.

Farook and his wife, Tashfeen Malik, killed 14 people in a Dec. 2 shooting at a holiday lunch for his county co-workers. The couple later died in a police gun battle.

Written by Tami Abdollah and Eric Tucker