Hacker group UncOver has released a new jailbreak tool for iOS devices that includes the most recent release of the operating system – 13.5.
Jailbreaking is the process of hacking an iOS device to allow users to remove software restrictions put in place by Apple. A jailbroken phone allows users to install third-party software that is not available in the App Store as well as giving users the ability to customize the devices.
The new jailbreak release, Unc0ver 5.0.0. jailbreaks iOS from versions 11.0 onward and exploits a zero-day vulnerability that Apple Inc. is not aware of. The tool itself is said to be the first zero-day jailbreak release since iOS 8.
#unc0ver v5.0.0 will be the first 0day jailbreak released since iOS 8!
Every other jailbreak released since iOS 9 used 1day exploits that were either patched in the next beta version or the hardware.
This will be a big milestone for jailbreaking.
— Pwn20wnd (@Pwn20wnd) May 23, 2020
Notably, a jailbreak was released for some iOS devicesin August, however, that tool, released by Pwn20wnd exploited a vulnerability in iOS devices that had been patched by Apple from iOS version 12.3 and onwards. Pwn20wnd, as a member of the Unc0ver team, discovered the zero-day vulnerability used in the new jailbreaking tool.
The tool itself can be used from iOS, macOS, Windows and Linux. Unc0ver said that the jailbreak is stable and doesn’t drain battery life or prevent the use of Apple services like iCloud, Apple Pay or iMessage. “This jailbreak basically just adds exceptions to the existing rules,” Pwn20wnd told Wired . “It only enables reading new jailbreak files and parts of the file system that contain no user data.”
While early reviews for the release are positive, jailbreaking an iOS device still presents a potential security risk. iOS may not have the same freedom to install apps and customize appearance that Android has but Apple has always countered that it provides a higher level of security. By opening the door to non-reviewed iOS apps, users run the risk of installing malware and other nefarious apps on their devices.
Apple is yet to respond to the news but it can be easily guessed that they’ll be looking to identify the zero-day vulnerability used by Unc0ver and seeking to patch it as soon as possible. The smaller jailbreak in August saw Apple deliver a patch for the exploited vulnerability inseven days and presuming that new vulnerability can be patched, a similar reaction can be expected again.
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