A new flaw can jailbreak older iPhones2019-09-27 18:20 by Daniela
Tags: iPhone, jailbreak
Security researcher axi0mX, published today an exploit that allows to jailbreak all iOS devices with Apple's A5 to A11 chips. That means affected phones range from the iPhone 4s to the iPhone 8 (which is still on sale) and even the iPhone X, with iPad models ranging from the iPad 2 all the way up to the 2017 iPad Pro.
As a Bootrom exploit, the "checkm8" cannot be patched. Bootrom exploits take advantage of a vulnerability in the initial code that iOS devices load when they boot up. Because it's read-only memory (ROM), Apple can't overwrite or patch it through a software update. In other words, it's permanent.
While the exploit isn't a full jailbreak on its own, on Twitter, axi0mX claims checkm8 is "possibly the biggest news in iOS jailbreak community in years," and that by releasing it to the public, the exploit might benefit both the iOS jailbreak and security research community. The last Bootrom-based jailbreak was released in 2009, making the Checkm8 exploit even a more remarkable achievement since many thought Apple managed to secure its boot-up process.
What's important, "checkm8" can't be used remotely, since it's a "tethered" exploit for now, meaning that it can only be triggered over USB. It would also have to be enabled each time through a computer, which limits the usefulness for a practical jailbreak right now. It's possible that the exploit will lead an "untethered" jailbreak.
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