iOS 12 Jailbreak Status: Everything You Need to Know!

Jailbreak iOS 12

In a few days from now, Apple will release iOS 12, the next major iOS software update for iPhone, iPad and iPod touch which includes performance and quality improvements, along with new features like Memoji, Screen Time, Siri Shortcuts, and more. Here’s the latest news and updates about iOS 12 jailbreak so you can take an informed decision when iOS 12 is released.

Let’s dive in:

Current Jailbreak Status

You can currently jailbreak your iPhone, iPad or iPod touch if you’re on iOS 11.3.1 or lower. Electra Jailbreak supports iOS 11 – iOS 11.1.2 and iOS 11.2 – iOS 11.3.1. It does not work with iOS 11.4 or iOS 11.4.1 as Apple has patched the vulnerabilities used by the Electra Jailbreak in iOS 11.4 and iOS 11.4.1.

Changes in iOS 12 to Prevent Jailbreaking

Well-known iOS developer and researcher nullriver recently pointed out that Apple has made it harder to jailbreak iOS 12. That’s doesn’t come as a surprise. Apple has been upping the ante against its fight against jailbreakers. Apple has used this strategy to keep jailbreakers at bay. It not only releases new software updates, that fixes the vulnerabilities used by the jailbreaks but also introduces security changes in major software updates like iOS 12 that will make it even more difficult. It also stops signing the older iOS firmware file, which prevents users from downgrading back to the older iOS version that can be jailbroken.

He tweeted:

iOS 12 has a few things that’ll make jailbreaking harder:

– introduction of CoreTrust: this checks that all signatures come from Apple, supposedly stopping fake signing like ldid does

– vm_map_exec_lockdown: some form of userland ktrr, coming w/ the A12 (probably, unconfirmed)

He followed it up with another tweet providing some insight, and also clarifying that none of these changes are showstoppers, and didn’t seem like drastic changes:

– symbols are completely stripped in the iOS 12 kernelcache, will make patchfinders harder to make

None of these are show stoppers however, but we’re gonna need to play with it to see how it’s all implemented. Doesn’t seem anything too drastic yet.

iOS Jailbreak History

Apple has been making it difficult to jailbreak iOS devices.

In the case of iOS 10, the first iOS 10 jailbreak was released on December 21. Well-known hacker Luca Todesco released a beta semi-untethered jailbreak tool for iOS 10.1 known as Yalu+mach_portal for select 64-bit iOS devices. On January 26, 2017, he released a more stable version of Yalu jailbreak for iOS 10.2, which supported all 64-bit iOS devices except for the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus, which is only supported by the older, more unstable version for iOS 10.1.1.

In the case of iOS 11, the first iOS 11 jailbreak, to.panda was released on December 23, 2017 by Abraham Masri. On December 26, 2017, developer Jonathan Levin released LiberiOS, a developer-only jailbreak based on the async_wake exploit by Ian Beer for iOS 11.0 to iOS 11.1.2, but it did not include Cydia. Well-known hacker and developer Coolstar finally released Electra jailbreak for iOS 11.0 – iOS 11.1.2.

Jailbreak iOS 12 Status

There is currently no tool available to jailbreak iOS 12, which is currently in beta, and is likely to be released on September 12.

The good news is that iOS 12 has been jailbroken. In June, security researcher Liang Chen of KeenLab had managed to successfully jailbreak iOS 12 running on his iPhone X. As you can see in the YouTube video below, he gave a visual proof that his iPhone X running iOS 12 and then proceeded to launch the KeenLab jailbreak app which installed Cydia after jailbreaking iPhone X.

However, it was the first iOS 12 beta, so it remains to be seen if iOS 12 GM which will be released this week, and iOS 12 released to the public next week can still be jailbroken using the exploits used by researcher Chen to jailbreak iOS 12 beta.

It is unlikely that Chen will release the exploit behind this exploit since the KeenLab team is known to keep such exploits private for their own research and testing purposes. But it gives us hope that someone from the jailbreak community like coolstar or security researcher Ian Beer, who had discovered the exploits used in Electra Jailbreak to jailbreak iOS 11 – iOS 11.1.2 and iOS 11.2 – iOS 11.3.1, could discover them and use them to jailbreak iOS 12 released to the public.

Security researcher Simone Ferrini has tweeted over the weekend that he has managed to pwn iOS 12 beta 12, which is the latest beta release by Apple ahead of an upcoming Golden Master seed of iOS 12. He shared a video of the pwned iOS 12 beta:

It remains to be seen if it can be used to develop a jailbreak for iOS 12.

Based on the last two years, we may need to wait patiently for iOS 12 jailbreak. But it is not the case of if we can jailbreak iOS 12, but when can we jailbreak iOS 12.

Sept 18, 2018: Security researchers at Alibaba’s Pandora Labs have been able to jailbreak iOS 12 public release. However, the security researches at Alibaba’s Pandora Labs are unlikely to release a jailbreak tool as they do it primarily for research purposes.

October 7, 2018: Well-known jailbreaker and developer Luca Todesco aka qwertyoruiopz has confirmed that he has successfully jailbroken iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max on iOS 12. We don’t expect Luca to release a jailbreak for iOS 12 and iPhone XS/iPhone XS Max as he left the jailbreaking scene last year after being harassed by jailbreakers.

Beware of Fake iOS 12 Jailbreaks

Fake news is not just affecting elections, the jailbreak community is also being targeted with fake jailbreaks. We are already seeing articles and YouTube videos which claim to jailbreak iOS 12. Any site claiming to have an iOS 12 jailbreak is a scam, so stay clear from such scam sites. Stay away from such tools as they can also potentially install malware on your iOS device. If there is a tool to jailbreak iOS 12, it will be available for free, and we’ll be the first to report it and share the jailbreak link.

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What do you plan to do? Do you plan to install iOS 12 or do you plan to wait for iOS 12 jailbreak to be released before upgrading? Let us know in the comments below.

This post was last updated in October 2018

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