Apple’s Revised Online Warning Against Jailbreaking


Following a recent iOS code hack, Apple has revised its online warning against jailbreaking iOS devices.

On the same day evasi0n was meant to debut, Apple updated an online article about the dangers of modifying iOS code. Although evasi0n didn’t actually become available until Monday, this effort shows that Apple is indeed concerned about recent jailbreaking consequences.

It’s difficult to determine exactly what was changed in Apple’s article. But the company lists a wide range of hazards that could be caused by jailbreaking including security problems, instability, shortened battery life, sketchy voice and data services, and the issues surrounding software updates.

In one of T3kd’s previous articles I discussed the current legality involved with jailbreaking. However, it’s important to point out that Apple considers jailbreaking a violation of the end user license. So if you’re considering jailbreaking an iOS the device, don’t expect apple to provide service for support.

Here’s Apple’s newly updated full warning:

As designed by Apple, iOS and iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch are designed to work together reliably. Unauthorized modifications to iOS (“jailbreaking”) can cause numerous issues to the hacked iPhone, iPad or iPod touch. Examples of issues caused by these unauthorized modifications to iOS have included the following:

Instability: Frequent and unexpected crashes of the device, crashes and freezes of built-in apps and third-party apps, and loss of data.

Security vulnerabilities: Security compromises have been introduced by these modifications that could allow hackers to steal personal information, damage the device, attack the wireless network, or introduce malware or viruses.

Shortened battery life: The hacked software has caused an accelerated battery drain that shortens the operation of an iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch on a single battery charge.

Unreliable voice and data: Dropped calls, slow or unreliable data connections, and delayed or inaccurate location data.

Disruption of services: Services such as Visual Voicemail, Weather, and Stocks have been disrupted or no longer work on the device. Additionally, third-party apps that use the Apple Push Notification Service have had difficulty receiving notifications or received notifications that were intended for a different hacked device. Other push-based services such as iCloud and Exchange have experienced problems synchronizing data with their respective servers.

Inability to apply future software updates: Some unauthorized modifications have caused damage to iOS that is not repairable. This can result in the hacked iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch becoming permanently inoperable when a future Apple-supplied iOS update is installed.

Apple strongly cautions against installing any software that hacks iOS. It is also important to note that unauthorized modification of iOS is a violation of iOS end-user license agreement and because of this, Apple may deny service for an iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch that has installed any unauthorized software.

To be fair, even the groups that develop and provide jailbreaking tools offer warnings to would be jailbreakers.

When all this jailbreaking business first became popular Apple took steps to ensure that updates couldn’t be broken, forcing hackers to then go back and crack the code again. Even Steve Jobs was quoted saying, “It’s a cat-and-mouse game. We try to stay ahead. People will try to break in, and it’s our job to stop them breaking in.” But Apple hasn’t really said much lately about jailbreaking. According to the numbers available, only about 5 percent of iOS owners have a jailbroken device.

For some users that really know what they’re doing, jailbreaking can be a very resourceful tool to unlock a device’s full potential. For those who aren’t familiar with the jailbreaking process, it essentially removes operating system restrictions and allows the execution of applications unauthorized by the manufacturer.

Chase Williams

Chase is a serial entrepreneur, electrical engineer, writer, and self-proclaimed techie. He enjoys to travel, hike, kayak, and learn new languages. He's been weightless on-board a NASA C9-B aircraft and his head hasn't quite come back down from the upper atmosphere. To keep up with his low-oxygen chatter, follow him on Twitter @ChaseHWill