Crucial iPhone source code leaks online

Apple's top-secret iBoot firmware source code spills onto GitHub for some insane reason

"The leaked sources of iBoot. bring us closer to a truly liberated iOS booted on generic arm boards and/or emulator", he added on Twitter.

According to sister publication, Macworld, the iOS source code that was leaked online has since been pulled down from the GitHub site, but not before it was made available for others to obtain copies of it. Now, it's almost impossible for hackers to even find bugs in iOS code, making iOS exploits relatively rare, unlike in Windows and Android.

Indeed, iBoot is the first program that gets kicked into action every time an iPhone is turned on.

The code, labeled "iBoot", is a component of iOS responsible for ensuring a trusted boot of the OS.

However, making the code public could allow intrepid hackers to sniff around in iBoot and find their own vulnerabilities, only instead of reporting them to Apple, they could tap into the flaws and use them as vectors of attack against iOS.

As per Motherboard, Jonathan Levin, an iOS and macOS expert, has called it the "biggest leak in history". "It's a huge deal".

Is The Code Even Real?

After the device is powered on and a low-level boot system is started from the phone's read-only memory (and checks the integrity of the iBoot code itself), iBoot performs checks to verify the integrity of iOS before launching the full operating system. "But by design the security of our products doesn't depend on the secrecy of our source code".

As mentioned above, Apple issued a DMCA notice demanding that the files be taken down as the iPhone source code is proprietary and private, containing Apple's copyright notice. However, Apple hasn't officially commented on the leak yet and thus the final authenticity remains unproven. GitHub took it down shortly after it received the notice. "And now it's wide open in source code form", Levin continued.

Security researcher Will Strafach told TechCrunch that the code is compelling for the information it gives hackers into the inner workings of the boot loader.

It is very likely that the code may have been spotted and was circulating in the jailbreaking and hacking community.



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