I had reported a couple of weeks back that iPhones sold as refurbished unit revealed previous owners personal data and had a follow up post on how Rich Mogull over at Securosis.com had come to the rescue and has published a method to wipe out almost all your personal data.
At that time I had also mentioned that the method was not foolproof. NerveGas, the iPhone hacking expert has just released an iPhone app aptly called Wipe App which should solve this issue by erasing the contents of your iPhone.
The iPhone hacker Jonathan “NerveGas” Zdziarski was the one who had released a hack that makes dual-booting possible even on the iPhone. He was also credited for the iPhone hack which gives you the ability to tether the iPhone to use its EDGE network from your laptop to surf the internet.
He has now released an iPhone application called "Wipe App" which performs a zero-write wipe of an iPhone / iPod Touch device and thus erases the contents of your iPhone. Zdziarski notes that "the device’s system and user partitions will be zeroed by this operation, and will require a restore through iTunes (but not from backup) when complete.".
Based on the instructions available in the readme, the usage of the iPhone application is not for the faint hearted. It needs iPhone software such as iPhone Utility Client (iPHUC) and some command line work.
1. Obtain a working copy of the iPHUC on your desktop
machine. iPHUC can be downloaded from http://code.google.com/p/iphuc/
2. Use iPHUC to place the device into recovery mode by using the ‘enterrecovery’ command, or force the device into recovery mode by holding in the home and power buttons simultaneously until the restore screen appears.
3. Once the device is in restore mode, exit iPHUC, then re-enter it. This will
enable recovery commands. Issue the following commands to load and run the wipe software:
recovery callback: Connected in Recovery Mode
recovery callback: Entering shell in Recovery Mode.
#: filecopytophone Wipe.bin
#: cmd setenv\ boot-args\ rd=md0\ -x\ -s\ pmd0=0×9340000.0xA00000
#: cmd saveenv
#: cmd bootx
4. The wipe tool will load and execute. You will be given a 30-second warning
prior to commencing wipe to change your mind. After this, ALL DATA WILL BE
Based on the above instructions NerveGas still needs to enhance this iPhone App further so that everyone can use it as it will be quite useful when someone is planning to sell their iPhone (something quite a few people might be planning to do with 3G iPhone round the corner).
Actually this app is an easier technique than the one he had published a few days back
based on a method that worked for him.
You can download Wipe App from this link and if you are also an iPhone hacking expert then do let us know if this application works.
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