iPhone Source Code Was Leaked by Low-Level Apple Employee

Discussion in 'MacRumors.com News Discussion' started by MacRumors, Feb 9, 2018.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot


    Apr 12, 2001

    Earlier this week, source code for iBoot, a core component of the iPhone's operating system, leaked on GitHub. The code was old, for a version of iOS 9, and it was quickly pulled from GitHub after Apple issued a DMCA takedown notice, but it left many wondering how such sensitive code ended up publicly available.

    To answer that question, Motherboard got in touch with unnamed sources who were involved in the leak and investigated screenshots, text messages, and more, to determine just how it happened.


    As it turns out, the code originally came from a low-level Apple employee who took the code from Apple in 2016 to share with friends in the jailbreaking community. This employee wasn't unhappy with Apple and didn't steal the code with malicious intent, but instead was encouraged by friends to obtain the code to benefit the jailbreaking community.
    The original group of five people who were provided with access to the code didn't intend to share it, but it somehow got out. From one of the original people involved:
    The code began circulating more widely in 2017 and picked up in popularity late in the year before ending up on GitHub this week. Many in the jailbreaking and iPhone research communities attempted to stop sharing, but the major public leak couldn't be avoided.

    According to the unnamed people who spoke to Motherboard, what leaked wasn't the "full leak." "It's not the original leak-it's a copy," said one source.

    Following the leak, Apple confirmed the authenticity of the code in a statement to MacRumors and pointed out that it's for a three-year-old operating system that's been replaced by iOS 11 and is in use only on a small number of devices.
    The iBoot code leak should not be of concern to the average user because Apple has many layers of protection in place, like the Secure Enclave, and does not rely on source code secrecy alone to keep its users safe. The leak could, however, make it easier for people to locate vulnerabilities to create new jailbreaks.

    Article Link: iPhone Source Code Was Leaked by Low-Level Apple Employee
  2. OldSchoolMacGuy Suspended


    Jul 10, 2008
    BREAKING NEWS: Android source code leaked, possibly by Google themselves!!


    This isn't a big deal. If anything it means finding some remaining open holes which can then be patched. All Linux is open source. There aren't issues there because of it. If anything it means others can help to find vulnerabilities which can then be corrected.

    iOS 9 was released 3 years ago. A LOT has changed in the source code since then and this isn't even the entire source as it can't be compiled.
  3. KoolAid-Drink macrumors 65816

    Sep 18, 2013
  4. rpmurray macrumors regular

    Feb 21, 2017
    Back End of Beyond
    Five people can keep a secret if five of them are dead.
  5. TheTruth101 Suspended

    Mar 15, 2017
    The funny thing is that his friends push him to do it and then they expose him.
  6. ke-iron macrumors 65816

    Aug 14, 2014
    Already fired. He stole from the company and broke other rules sharing.
  7. mtneer macrumors 68030


    Sep 15, 2012
    "low level"?? jeez.. I wonder how many "high level" Apple execs would have known which way was top or bottom if handed a string of source code.
  8. Bnazzaro macrumors newbie


    Nov 15, 2017
  9. iOSFangirl6001 macrumors 6502


    Aug 11, 2015
    Pink Slip Time

    Funny how “friends” can throw friends under the bus huh?
    Also peer pressure may have been a red flag as to how good of “friends” they really were

    “Dude come do this thing that’s possibly illegal or could get us sued”

    Not well thought out on the part of the friends
  10. leepalisoc macrumors member

    Sep 18, 2012
    I think you are referring to the high-level execs that are handling Apple's business side. There are high-level positions in the software development team, too.
  11. Braderunner macrumors 6502a

    Oct 2, 2015
  12. LoadStar macrumors member

    Mar 15, 2011
    Really? Any iPad 2, 3, 4, iPad Mini 1, iPod Touch 5th Gen, etc. can't run anything above iOS 9. I imagine there are more of those devices still out there than you might think.

    I know that where I work, people and departments still continue to hang on to quite a lot of these types of devices, despite efforts from IT to get them to trade up or give them up.
  13. sputnikv macrumors 6502


    Oct 3, 2009
    good way to ensure you don’t get hired by another tech giant
  14. dogslobber macrumors 68040


    Oct 19, 2014
    Apple Campus, Cupertino CA
    Somebody is going to prison for a long time. FBI is investigating.
  15. radiology macrumors 6502


    Feb 11, 2014
    Westlake, OH
    If you were involved in the leak of the code and for wathever reason you are reading my post, I have just one thing to tell you: **** ¥OU!
  16. thequietaussie macrumors member

    Mar 15, 2016
    Low level code like this is changed on an "as needed" basis, so it's likely to be mostly the same, barring any vulnerability fixes since then. But there's a reason jailbreaking has gotten incredibly hard - it's already pretty solid.
  17. ZippoS macrumors newbie


    Oct 2, 2015
    Apple's got $200,000 bounty for any bugs found in IOS' secure boot. This leak could be good for the Jailbreak community, but it could also be a nice paycheque for some smart programmer.
  18. Elijen macrumors 6502


    May 8, 2012
    Can you stop referring to it as "iPhone source code"? :D
  19. Glmnet1 macrumors 6502a

    Oct 21, 2017
    Not that I was involved in any way, but why?
  20. DeepIn2U macrumors 603


    May 30, 2002
    Toronto, Ontario, Canada

    So how did it leak out if they didn't intend for it to be as so? Simply delete it, keep the PC OFFLINE. You'd figure the group knows about these basic tennants if they didn't want it to leak out ...

    ^ THAT is the only reason we're reading this horsecrap ... to save their arses from a legal suit. All this running around the real facks of
    a) getting no permission from Apple to take the source code, and internal tools, with the intent to share it illegally with the jailbreaken community which doesn't have licensed rights to the tools nor the source code in the first place.

    Need to stop treating adults with full intent to commit an act as children here.
  21. Glideslope macrumors 603


    Dec 7, 2007
    A quiet place in NY.
    Going to prison most likely. :apple:
  22. jaseone macrumors 65816


    Nov 7, 2004
    Houston, USA
    This was the bootloader, pretty sure that isn't Open Source on Android otherwise rooting wouldn't be such a big deal.
  23. Doomtomb macrumors 6502


    Jul 14, 2011
    Austin, TX
    Download this code to turn your old iPhone into an iPhone X
  24. Baymowe335 macrumors 68040

    Oct 6, 2017
    These criminals need to be dealt with swiftly and aggressively. Jail is necessary because you don't want others thinking they can get away with it.

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