The iPhone “secretly” uploads your call history to iCloud, according to a report from The Intercept.
That might sound like a terrifying proposition, but there is a very good reason for what is going on behind-the-scenes. And there is absolutely no need to worry.
According to The Intercept, which published research from Russian digital forensics company ElcomSoft, “calls made and received on an iOS device, complete with phone numbers, dates and times, and duration” as well as “missed and bypassed calls” are uploaded to iCloud and stored on Apple servers for some four months.
Complete history of the users’ FaceTime audio and video calls – as well as third-party VoIP services like WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger that appear within the native iPhone phone app – are also synced to iCloud, the company revealed.
An update to the Russian firm’s Phone Breaker software boasts the ability to “download iPhone call logs that are synced with iCloud, enabling near real-time access to synced call logs. In addition to call logs, the updated cloud extraction tool will also download synced contacts.”
They would also need the correct Apple ID and password for the target’s iCloud account.
That’s because – contrary to what was stated in the report – Apple considers the call history uploads a feature necessary for cross-device functionality.
The Cupertino company is not interested in spying on its users, but instead uses the uploaded information so that iPhone owners can return a missed call from their iPad, or MacBook.
So, it turns out the supposedly secret flaw in the iPhone – is actually a deliberate feature.
When contacted about the report and its ability to upload customers’ call history to the cloud, a spokesperson for Apple told Mashable: “We offer call history syncing as a convenience to our customers so that they can return calls from any of their devices.
“Apple is deeply committed to safeguarding our customers’ data.
“That’s why we give our customers the ability to keep their data private
“Device data is encrypted with a user’s passcode, and access to iCloud data including backups requires the user’s Apple ID and password.
“Apple recommends all customers select strong passwords and use two-factor authentication.”
In the iOS Security Guide, which Apple publishes online, the company lists the fact that it stores call logs online. It adds that: “Files are backed up to iCloud in their original, encrypted state.”
The news comes as a new study shows that the vast majority of third-party Apple chargers are dangerous – and pose a serious risk of fire.