A team of security professionals reports that they have successfully come up with an iOS 11.3.1 jailbreak – managing to launch Cydia on a device with the current operating system.
The security researchers behind the iOS 11.3.1 jailbreak are from Tencent Keen Security Lab – a relatively well-known group that has been responsible for discovering a number of vulnerabilities in the past. These highly capable researchers, including Marco Grassi and Liang Cheng, have released a screenshot of the iPhone X running Cydia – providing evidence of an iOS 11.3.1 jailbreak.
While many researchers or hackers may first announce the news of an iOS 11.3.1 jailbreak on social media in order to create some hype around the discovery, the Keen Security Lab opted instead to break the news at the Infiltrate Security Conference, which was held at Fontainebleau Hotel in Miami Beach, Florida over the past few days.
— Liang Chen (@chenliang0817) April 29, 2018
At the Infiltrate conference, the Lab co-founder and other members of the Tencent Keen Security Lab gave insight into the iOS 11.3.1 jailbreak success as well as a number of other security-related topics. While the iOS 11.3.1 jailbreak was far from the only announcement at the conference, it was probably one of the most significant for those looking to have a jailbroken device that is running the most updated operating system.
However, one thing to keep in mind is that the discovery from the Lab is a proof that they can get through the security rather than a commitment to releasing a public iOS 11.3.1 jailbreak. Just like the majority of security research teams, the hack behind this new jailbreak will likely be used in cooperating with Apple rather than to allow the average user to unlock their phone – a major problem that turns an exciting discovery into one with very little practical use for the rest of us.
The iOS 11.3.1 jailbreak is more of a proof of concept than anything else, driving home the fact that the Tencent Keen Security Lab has the ability to hack the latest operating system rather than making the leaps and bounds forward that the public community would need in order to develop a jailbreak of their own.
At this point, it’s really not clear how much work the team put into the iOS 11.3.1 jailbreak, so it’s up in the air as to how long it will take more benevolent hackers to find the same vulnerabilities and deliver a brand new exploit that could lead to a public jailbreak. We also don’t know that the Cydia version running on the jailbroken iPhone X is just a front-end or if it’s already functioning as a package manager capable of installing all sorts of tweaks, themes, and other packages that make a jailbroken device so attractive. All in all, we’re left in much the same place as we were before – armed with the new knowledge that a jailbreak is, indeed, possible with few indications of how to actually get to that point ourselves.
The security researchers that discovered the new iOS 11.3.1 jailbreak vulnerability are some of the tops in their field, and they tend to operate a whole different level from the average jailbreak developer. As such, there’s certainly a possibility that we’ll never see an iOS 11.3.1 jailbreak that is accomplished in the same manner as that of Tencent Keen Security Lab. With that said, the jailbreaking community continues to foster a huge amount of talent and a huge amount of developers that are passionate about opening up iOS to further customization. As long as there’s a demand for unlocked phones there will be developers hard at work giving us the opportunity to use our phones the way we want. This new iOS 11.3.1 jailbreak discovery may not do much for us at this point, but it does confirm that a hack is possible – making this a valuable piece of news regardless of the current lack of practicality.