Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Has Apple Bug Bounty Program Killed iOS 10.1.1 Jailbreak?

It is already two month since iOS 10 made its public debut and there is still no good news about a public jailbreak release date. Has Apple bug bounty program killed iOS 10.1.1 jailbreak? Hackers have been able to jailbreak iOS 10, but it seems none are willing to make their exploits available. Just two days ago well-known iOS hacker Luca Todesco posted image proof of his own iPhone 7 jailbroken on iOS 10.1.1. But taking into consideration his long track record of releasing teaser videos and pictures proving successful jailbreaking many iOS firmwares his last attempt wouldn't be released to public as all previous.

When Apple debuted its iOS 10 beta this summer, it made it available with an unencrypted kernel. This makes it easier to discover security flaws, and it gives users hope that a jailbreak might come easy. In actual fact, the unencrypted kernel simply makes it faster and easier for Apple to patch bugs that exist in its iOS 10 releases. This is likely to make each update more secure than the last. But that hasn’t been the case as Luca Todesco managed to jailbreak almost every next iOS 10 update. However there no proofs that his jailbreak tools were workable.

Apple has also taken other steps to enhance security. Introduced back in August at the Black Hat conference, the bug bounty program rewards hackers up to $200,000 for finding vulnerabilities in iOS and iCloud that could pose a threat to users. The only catch is, those bugs must be reported to Apple to be fixed.
This gives hackers a tough to choice to make. When they find an exploit that could be used to jailbreak iOS 10, they can either keep quiet about it and create the jailbreak, or they can report it to Apple for hundreds of thousands of dollars.

In its turn, Zerodium — a premium zero-day acquisition platform will pay $1.5 million for a remote jailbreak exploit for iOS 10 software version. So now talented hackers have few options to earn money.

So Apple bug bounty program hasn't killed iOS 10.1.1 jailbreak it gave the opportunity to many unknown hackers either to develop jailbreak or to improve iOS platform security.


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