Local police get software to hack into newer iphones

Local police get software to hack into newer iphones

YAKIMA COUNTY, Wash.- Tracking down hard evidence is crucial to cracking any criminal investigation, and officers over at the Sunnyside Police Department say phones almost always have the answer.

"More and more information is being stored on phones. We know crimes are being recorded on phones, we know that people are imputing drug information," said Sunnyside Police Commander Dan Christman.

When people upgrade to newer Iphones, means new coding challenges and tougher security systems, and it makes it more expensive for police to search them.

"There have been many opportunities, maybe a couple dozen, that we could have looked at them. No guarantee that there was going to be anything on them, but we chose not to because we didn't have the funds available to do that," said Christman.

A newly adopted Iphone hacking software is now preventing cost from being a factor when investigating a phone. Yakima police recently bought the program, and Sunnyside Police is paying a portion to use the software.

Commander Christman says their old hacking software would charge them $2,000 each time they needed a phone to be hacked. With this new device, they pay that once a year and can hack unlimited phones. Some locals may be worried that this new device could be another tool to invade people's privacy, but locals tell Action News it could help protect the community if it's used properly.

"I think if it's life or death situation, then something like that would be reasonable," said local Brandon Stelter.

"If they have a legit reason, and it's for a good purpose and they are trying to solve something I think it could be a good advantage to the local community," said local Tanner Holbrook.

Commander Christman says this will give the department the ability crack cases more quickly, and also provide them with even more information than other softwares have given them.

"For the price of one phone, we could literally download a couple hundred phones. We just see it having unlimited potential in the future especially," said Christman.

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