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IBM toolkit keeps data encrypted in iPhone and Mac apps while in use

Android and Linux users will get it soon.
Jon Fingas, @jonfingas
June 6, 2020
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Chris Velazco/Engadget

It’s now more practical to keep data encrypted while you use it, provided you’re using an Apple device. IBM has released (via ZDNet) a toolkit that makes it easier to implement fully homomorphic encryption (FHE) in iOS and macOS apps. In theory, hackers will have a tougher time prying on certain kinds of sensitive information that would normally need to be decrypted, like your financial or medical data. Apps can selectively decrypt content, too, so a user can only get the data they’re meant to see.

The kit is available on GitHub (iOS, macOS) now, with Android and Linux versions expected in “a few weeks.” IBM has cautioned that they’re “not perfect or final,” and that they won’t always be useful. They might, however, be complete enough to bolster the security in cases where even temporary decryption might pose a security risk.

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