Apple has repeatedly “quarreled” with the intelligence services and the US authorities, refusing to hack into smartphones of terrorists and criminals. But it turns out there was a time when the company worked with the government on a secret gadget.
Former Apple software developer David Shayer told about the “spy” iPod. In 2005, he said, he was asked to “help two engineers from the US Department of Energy build a special iPod.” In fact, these were not engineers, but employees of Bechtel, a major US defense contractor. Only four people knew about this project at Apple, they all had already left the company, and no documents remained.
The fifth-generation iPod was chosen for the modification due to its easy-to-open case and large 60GB hard drive. As planned, it was supposed to look like a regular player, but secretly record. This additional data written to the hard drive should not have been detected.
The contractors were given an office at Apple headquarters and spent several months learning to modify an early version of the iPod operating system. Shyer himself did not see the additional equipment but believes that the player was used to make a “hidden Geiger counter” for conducting secret operations to collect evidence of radioactivity.