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Feb 23, 2014

Apple Hires 17-Year-Old Jailbreaker “Winocm”




Apple has hired jailbreaker “winocm,” a teenager who was able to port the entire iPhone operating system over to Nokia N900.

Of course, winocm’s resume doesn’t just include this single feat. He says he’s been able to do some “insane” things with both iOS and OS X on a core level, and he’s responsible for some iOS jailbreaks (for iOS 6.1.5, more recently). “I had to basically do exactly what Apple did when they were making iPhone OS originally,” winocm tells Cult of Mac which points out that “By rewriting the iPhone OS from the ground up, he was essentially able to create an open source version of the operating system.” Winocm added, “It’s really complex and hellish stuff. Usually they have a team of people working on this type of thing, but I’m just one person, not a team.” Hence the reason why Apple could really use a guy like him.

Winocm himself broke the news about his hiring on Twitter yesterday, when he relayed to his 44K followers, “I figured now is the right time to say this, I will be working at Apple starting later this year.” The Cupertino, California-based Apple Inc. will most likely use winocm’s skill set to strengthen the security of iOS and OS X. As always, Apple hiring an iOS jailbreaker is somewhat ironical, having indulged in a fierce cat and mouse game before shaking hands. On the other hand, jailbreaking is getting less and less necesary these days, as Apple is offering more features and flexibility in its mobile software. But where there’s room for tweaks that Apple doesn’t allow, you can bet lots of people will still want to jailbreak their devices.

In related news, Apple has discovered and subsequently patched a serious vulnerability in iOS 7 where “An attacker with a privileged network position may capture or modify data in sessions protected by SSL/TLS.” The issue affects most iPhones and iPads currently in circulation today and has been addressed with the release of iOS 7.0.6 for new-generation hardware, and iOS 6.1.6 for old devices, such as the iPhone 3GS. Apple TV Software 6.0.2, released in tandem with these two updates, also includes the security patch.

Winocm tweet
Image credits to Winocm on Twitter

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