Having tangled with Apple in court over unlocking the iPhone of a terror suspect involved in the San Bernardino shooting, the FBI is still yet to confirm whether the information stored on the device has been useful.
The agency eventually received help from a third party to unlock the phone after Apple refused, but when asked if the information subsequently extracted had been of use, an FBI lawyer would not be drawn on the case, according to the New York Times.
James A Baker, an FBI lawyer, told the International Association of Privacy Professionals conference in the US that the agency was “still working” on the information.
“It was worth the fight to make sure that we have turned over every rock that we can with respect to the investigation,” he said.
“We owe it to the victims and the families to make sure that we pursue every logical lead.”
Ever since it was confirmed that the US department of justice was dropping its case to compel Apple to assist in the unlocking of the device because help had come from elsewhere, interest has surrounded just how useful the retrieved information was.
There was a sense of urgency to the US government’s pursuit of Apple, with suggestions from the government that potentially vital information regarding co-conspirators in the San Bernardino attack or evidence of other terror cells within the US might emerge.
The full details of what was found on the phone are unlikely to ever be made public, but many are curious to find out if the court battle was worth the effort.