Big News: Apple to end-to-end encrypt iCloud Backups

Posted December 7, 2022 at 8:43 PM

Apple announced that it will roll out end-to-end encryption on its iCloud backups. This is something Fight for the Future has been advocating for as a part of our Make DMs Safe campaign, and it’s a victory for human rights and a huge step toward securing people’s digital lives.

The below statement can be attributed to Caitlin Seeley George, Campaign Director, she/her:

“Apple’s reputation as the pro-privacy tech company has long been at odds with the reality that iCloud backups aren’t secured by end-to-end encryption. The announcement that the company will implement end-to-end for iCloud backups in the coming weeks is a big deal: it means peoples’ personal messages, documents, and data will be secure from law enforcement, hackers, and Apple itself. Law enforcement agencies have spread misinformation for years about encryption, and tried to stop Apple from taking this important step, but any claims that this move will put people in danger are misguided at best. Encryption makes people more safe, not less safe. This move will improve human rights and digital security globally, and especially for people and communities that are overly-targeted by law enforcement surveillance. End-to-end encryption has been highlighted as a critical privacy measure for abortion seekers and providers since the reversal of Roe, and has long been a demand from groups including racial justice activists, LBGTQ+ folks, immigrants, and journalists.

Now, we need Apple to secure the communications of all its users by implementing the RCS messaging protocol for iMessage, which would allow texts between iPhone and Android users to be end-to-end encrypted. If Apple’s pro-privacy messaging is more than a marketing angle,  this is a non-negotiable step.

Next, the other places we live our digital lives need to step up and make our messages safe. Twitter, Slack, and Discord all lag far behind Apple in this regard.”