Jailbreaking iPhones and iPads have become less prominent these days, partly because of Apple’s sometimes overzealous security measures and practices. It has been quite a while since a vulnerability was discovered and exploited within just days from an iOS release. That’s exactly the reason why the Unc0ver jailbreak for iOS 13.5, which was just released last week, is making rounds over the iOS community and the Internet. Given the current global situation, however, it might not be the best time for a security exploit to come out.
Both iOS jailbreaking and Android rooting rely on security holes to gain privileged access to otherwise locked parts of the operating system. In the early days of the iPhone, such methods were almost necessary for users to truly take advantage of their devices. For some people, that’s still the reason for taking full control of something they paid for and the jailbreaking community seems to be experiencing a renaissance, especially after Apple’s even tighter restrictions on iOS.
Unc0ver unexpected surprise for that community allows jailbreaking devices running on iOS 11 all the way up to the current iOS 13.5. That fact alone is already a significant accomplishment but the hacker goes one step further in making claims that are almost too good to be true. Not only is the jailbreak stable and battery efficient, it also keeps Apple’s user data protections intact enough that even things like Apple Pay can still be used.
Security researchers have at least been able to confirm that Unc0ver works as intended. They have yet to test, however, if the security claims are truly legit. That’s harder to prove considering the jailbreak itself is kept within tight wraps.
That brings up one of the natural consequences of jailbreaking and rooting, that is, exposing phones to other security exploits. At a time when contact tracing apps are starting to appear and hacking attempts are on the rise, leaving your smartphone exposed could be riskier than ever.