Apple Thanks Jailbreakers For Tightening Up iOS 7.1 Security


It’s a tale as old as time (and, perhaps, a song as old as rhyme): Apple releases a new version of iOS, hackers immediately get busy finding security vulnerabilities to exploit, eventually claw together a jailbreak, only for Apple to then find out about the flaws and fix them for the new iOS version.

Rinse and repeat.

Having released iOS 7.1, Apple has also released a list crediting the individual researchers and companies who helped spot security issues with the previous version of iOS — including jailbreak specialists Evad3rs, the team behind the iOS 6 and 7 jailbreaks.

Apple is one of many tech companies who do this, although unlike some it doesn’t hand out any rewards (not even a t-shirt) to those who spot security issues.

The irony, of course, is that while Apple thanking Evad3rs is all well and good, it does mean the company is now closing the loopholes that let them jailbreak in the first place. It also demonstrates, however, the value of constructive jailbreakers — since without their efforts, Apple may not become aware of these security flaws at all.

Apple, however, is clear that it is not offering a ringing endorsement of the hackers.

“Mention of third-party websites and products is for informational purposes only and constitutes neither an endorsement nor a recommendation,” the newly-launched webpage reads. “Apple assumes no responsibility with regard to the selection, performance or use of information or products found at third-party websites.”

And so the cycle begins again.

About the author

Luke DormehlLuke Dormehl is a UK-based journalist and author, with a background working in documentary film for Channel 4 and the BBC. He is the author of The Formula: How Algorithms Solve All Our Problems, And Create More and The Apple Revolution, both published by Penguin/Random House. His tech writing has also appeared in Wired, Fast Company, Techmeme, and other publications. He'd like you a lot if you followed him on Twitter.

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