APPLE'S IBOOT LEAK was reportedly the work of a former intern who nicked the code while working at Cupertino in 2016.
That's according to two people who originally received the code from a 'low-level' Apple employee before it was posted to GitHub, reported Motherboard.
"He pulled everything, all sorts of Apple internal tools and whatnot," a friend of the intern told Motherboard, as the intern has signed a non-disclosure agreement with Apple and is, therefore, keeping tight-lipped about the leak.
The leaked iOS boot code was first given to a group of five of the intern's friends who are part of the iOS jailbreaking community and from there it found its way onto the GitHub online code repository.
The idea was to use the iBoot code, which was for iOS 9, to find ways to circumnavigate Apple's stringent security and essentially figure out how to break-open the walled garden Apple has with its iOS ecosystem.
Jailbreaking an iPhone, for example, allows for more customisation to be done on iOS and allows the phone to run apps and software not approved by Apple and its strict App Store policies.
Apple goes to great lengths to keep its code secret, as it does with pretty much all its gadgets and software. So much so that it's reportedly hired a task force designed to root out leakers and spillers of its secrets.
What such a taskforce does with leakers is known. Perhaps they are beaten to a pulp by immaculately designed clubs 'designed form the ground-up' buy earnest Apple designer Jonny Ive. Or maybe they are whisked away to a secret facility and plugged into a giant hive mind computer designed to power Siri's smarts.
Regardless, we doubt the intern will be welcome at any Apple stores anytime soon.
The leak doesn't look to be a big security risk, but the intern's friend noted it could be "weaponised" even though the group of pals did try and ensure the code was only spread further afield once it became old.
There are components of iBoot that are shared with iOS 11, so there potential that the code could be exploited to crack into Apple's mobile operating system.
However, Tim Cook's crew don't seem to fussed by the leak on the surface having stated that "the security of our products doesn't depend on the secrecy of our source code".
Time will tell if the leaked iBoot code can be used to open up iPhones and hack into iPads, but we reckon Apple will be well prepared to squash any security issues that pop up. µ
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