Over 225,000 Jailbroken iPhones Have Been Hacked, Per Cybersecurity Firm
For almost a decade now, Apple has been warning mobile users not to mess with the security settings of their iPhone devices, such as letting their smartphones work in foreign countries or install mobile apps that were not approved by Apple. This practice is known as jailbreaking, with many a mobile user having done it (or somebody else) at least once with the belief that it is harmless. Apple, of course, believes that jailbreaking makes the user’s iPhone vulnerable to hackers.
Well, it turns out Apple may have been right all along. According to cybersecurity firm Palo Alto Networks, it appears that over 225,000 jailbroken iPhones have already been hacked. The cybersecurity research team found the users’ breached information on the black market, and an estimated 20,000 users had taken advantage of the info in order to download mobile apps and complete fake purchases within apps. Those affected were in 18 different territories, including China where the hackers were also based.
This latest findings are both positive and negative for Apple. First of all, it validates the company’s years long stand against jailbreaking, essentially vindicating Apple now for its campaign. But on the other hand, it is a reminder that security flaws can easily be taken advantage of by hackers, and worse, Apple and its iPhone brand are now associated with that, although unfairly perhaps. Still, Apple is continuing to tell everybody that there is a very good reason for why it is implementing security systems in its iPhone devices (even more so now that the company is about to introduce its new iPhones in the next few days).
Some security experts, however, think that Apple may not be totally blameless in this situation (the same goes for developers and creators of mobile apps, too). The fact of the matter is: mobile users will always ignore warnings and continue jailbreaking practices. Warnings are good and all, but they just will not do nowadays. Mobile users are, by nature, inherently curious creatures, and they will always be interested in tinkering with a smartphone’s security settings, be it an iPhone or some other handset. And there will always be people who want to try to install apps that are not approved by Apple’s security system. There is some risk involved, of course, but what it all comes down to is that mobile users really just want to be able to do whatever they want to to their smartphones.