Apple has the technical ability to disclose a wide range of information about a user upon the request of the authorities – from the person’s name and contact information to their photos and e-mail content.
This refers to the new company policy of cooperation with the law enforcement agencies. If there is a valid search warrant and the serial number of the iPhone, iPod touch or iPad the Cupertino-based company may extract some types of data, even if the device has a password.
In particular, this refers to the user files created with proprietary applications. These include SMS-messages, photos, videos, contacts, and call history records. In case if the iOS-device is password-protected, the Apple cannot disclose the contents of the e-mail, calendar plans or the data of the third party applications.
The data from the password-protected devices can only be retrieved in the Apple headquarters in California if the gadgets run iOS 4 and above and are in good working condition. Apple is able to convey personal photos, contacts, correspondence, documents and other information at the request of the authorities.
The company stores and can convey the name of the Apple product owner, their physical and electronic addresses, telephone number, information about the device and the date of its purchase at the request of the U.S. authorities. In addition, if a person uses iTunes or the Apple Store, the company can disclose the data about the content purchased and downloaded, as well as the credit card number used for the transaction.
If the customer uses iCloud, Apple can convey all the data to the U.S. authorities including: photos, documents, contacts, calendars, bookmarks, as well as correspondence in the iCloud mail service. Apple also explained that it has the capability to intercept e-mail messages that are sent from the Apple devices. However, it is not possible for FaceTime video calling service and iMessage messenger, since the data is encrypted.
Apple discloses the user’s information upon court orders, but in some cases, it reserves the right to provide information in the emergencies without a court decision. It is referred to the situations in which there is a risk to life or health. Apple will notify its users about the requests for information from the state agencies in cases where it is not prohibited by the court and there is no risk to the health and life of a person whose information has been requested by the U.S. authorities.