Apple says it has started sending the first unlocked iPhones to selected security researchers. The company will post the devices as of today quoted. These iPhones come with unencrypted firmware and are virtually jailbroken, which enables the security experts to officially check the latest versions of iOS for security weaknesses.
High hurdles for using the special iPhones
Apple initiated this project in the summer, as we did in one message at the time had reported. However, the requirements for the participants are strict. The devices may only be used in the private or professional rooms of the participants and not away from them in the everyday life of the recipients. All devices issued are left to the recipients for only one year, but it is possible to apply for an extension after this period.
Participants are obliged to immediately and fully report all discoveries, including less critical observations, to Apple. After all, if participants encounter a serious and critical error, the meanwhile rather respectable rewards beckon under the Apple Bug County program.
This additional motivation is also urgently needed. Even if iOS is still quite secure, there are now a number of ways to bypass encryption and other security measures that are particularly popular with law enforcement agencies.