The slow and consistent Snowden leaks about how everything we do is monitored, recorded and analysed is freaking some people out. And this extra customer push may be what was needed to finally improve on-device security for our most personal devices (aka smartphones).
Apple announced (link) that IOS 8 is a big move for IOS device security because it is now "technologically impossible" to access data stored on a passcode or TouchID locked device. Apple says they can no longer bypass device security. It is important to note that this only applies for on device information (contact, pictures, recordings, etc), anything stored in the cloud is fair game and can be handed over to authorities with a warrant or NSL.
Obviously law enforcement isn't too thrilled about this new hurdle because it (they claim) makes it easier for criminals to perform their nefarious activities and hide.
Why did Apple do this? Because if they can't technically provide the information, then they can no longer be compelled to do so by a court. It reduces workload for them and improves customer perception.
Now for the bad news. Renown security analyst Jonathan Zdziarski discussed these new measures on his blog (link) but threw in an important caveat :
I don't want to undersell what Apple has done. Apple has helped make IOS users much safer by fixing many of the security issues present in IOS7. The above note by Jonathan is something to keep in mind. If you want to maintain the highest level of security protection, never connect your iPhone to a PC.