iOS jailbreakers thwarted by Apple's latest version of iBooks

Posted:
in iPhone edited January 2014
Apple has taken a new approach in its battle with users who hack iOS-powered devices like the iPhone and iPad, blocking "jailbreakers" from accessing content in its iBooks e-reader application.



Using the hack dubbed "greenpois0n" to jailbreak Apple's iOS 4.2.1 triggers a "jailbreak check" built into the mobile operating system since version 4.0, according to Social Apples. That "check" reportedly prevents some users from opening content in the latest version iBooks.



"There is a problem with the configuration of your iPhone," the error message in iBooks 1.2.1 reads. "Please restore with iTunes and reinstall iBooks."



Hacker "Comex" of the iPhone Dev Team explained via Twitter how the new anti-jailbreak measure works: "It seems that before opening a DRMed book, iBooks drops an improperly signed binary, tries to execute it, and if it works concludes that the device is jailbroken and refuses to open the book."



In December it was claimed that a jailbreaking application programming interface found in iOS 4 was disabled with the release of iOS 4.2. But the newly discovered security measure apparently only applies to the iBooks software.







Because the change applies only to the iBooks application downloaded from the App Store and is not a system-wide issue, it's likely that Apple's interest is to curb potential piracy of e-books. Jailbreaking is a process that allows iOS device users to run unauthorized code, and can also be used to pirate software and content from the App Store and elsewhere.



But according to Social Apples, the security measure also prevents users from accessing legally purchased e-books through the iBooks application on a jailbroken device. Though it is a warranty voiding process, the practice of jailbreaking to run unauthorized code was deemed legal by the U.S. government last July.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 163
    What I hear apple saying here is they want me to buy kindle books from now on.
  • Reply 2 of 163
    saareksaarek Posts: 1,123member
    I mainly use iBooks on my iPad, can't load my books on my iPhone as the article says. Just means I'll get all books from Kindle store now. If it's between losing Mywi or iBooks it's no contest!
  • Reply 3 of 163
    hodarhodar Posts: 266member
    I bought my iPhone from AT&T for $200

    I pay my monthly AT&T bill of $113

    I jailbreak my phone



    Now, books I have purchased for ~$15 each are not viewable?



    How is this not extortion? What I am doing (jailbreaking) is perfectly legal. What Apple has done, is denying me the ability to view a book I have legitimately paid for.



    This is nothing short of extortion. Now, this will create a new effort by people to crack the DRM on iBooks; and when the DRM is broken on iBooks - this will create a new Book piracy industry that does not exist today.



    As we used to say in grade school - "Nice move, Ex-lax"
  • Reply 4 of 163
    Ridiculously simple workaround available on Cydia in 3...2...1...
  • Reply 5 of 163
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Hodar View Post


    I bought my iPhone from AT&T for $200

    I pay my monthly AT&T bill of $113

    I jailbreak my phone



    Now, books I have purhcased for $15 are not viewable.



    How is this not extortion? What I am doing (jailbreaking) is perfectly legal. What Apple has done, is denying me the ability to view a book I have legitimately paid for.



    This is nothing short of extortion.



    What does paying AT&T have to do with anything?



    The rest of your argument is sound, but the beginning is meaningless.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Shunnabunich View Post


    Ridiculously simple workaround available on Cydia in 3...2...1...



    It's already out.
  • Reply 6 of 163
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Hodar View Post


    I bought my iPhone from AT&T for $200

    I pay my monthly AT&T bill of $113

    I jailbreak my phone



    Now, books I have purhcased for $15 are not viewable.



    How is this not extortion? What I am doing (jailbreaking) is perfectly legal. What Apple has done, is denying me the ability to view a book I have legitimately paid for.



    This is nothing short of extortion.



    You should totally sue
  • Reply 7 of 163
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    ... "It seems that before opening a DRMed book, iBooks drops an improperly signed binary, tries to execute it, and if it works concludes that the device is jailbroken and refuses to open the book."

    ...



    That's clever!
  • Reply 8 of 163
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by stevetim View Post


    What I hear apple saying here is they want me to buy kindle books from now on.



    What you really hear is Apple saying is lets support developers. Jailbreaking is the way apps are pirated. Not all people with jailbroken iPhones (?) steal software but per news reports there are enough of them out there that at times it has been approx 90% stolen 10% purchased (for certain apps). Lets pay people for their hard work. Typically apps are in the $0.99 to $4.99 range with the lower side being more the norm. Is it too much to ask to pay people for their hard work.



    I get it that to some folks they feel limited and they want to hack the iPhone. I also see what has happened with the android OS and am glad I am in this walled garden, no virus protection needed, not much in the app store as far as stolen content or apps, malware or the like. Thanks, but no thanks, I'll keep my iPhone.



    BTW: I am also a developer.
  • Reply 9 of 163
    sheffsheff Posts: 1,407member
    not a big deal but a bad move i think. if i bought a book let me read it, crack down on illegal copies instead.



    Jail breaking is not just about piracy. SMB settings, weather icon, five icon dock, and soon turn by turn voice navigation in google maps are all good examples of jailbreak apps. some are even paid apps that developers make money from.



    In addition its a play ground to test airplay hacks that are not authorized by apple, but harm no one but the crashed user's device.



    Besides if only 2% are jailbroken how big of a piracy threat is it?
  • Reply 10 of 163
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Hodar View Post


    I bought my iPhone from AT&T for $200

    I pay my monthly AT&T bill of $113

    I jailbreak my phone



    Now, books I have purchased for ~$15 each are not viewable?



    How is this not extortion? What I am doing (jailbreaking) is perfectly legal. What Apple has done, is denying me the ability to view a book I have legitimately paid for.



    This is nothing short of extortion. Now, this will create a new effort by people to crack the DRM on iBooks; and when the DRM is broken on iBooks - this will create a new Book piracy industry that does not exist today.



    As we used to say in grade school - "Nice move, Ex-lax"



    Stop crying like a baby and thank your lucky stars Apple allows you to use a jailbroken iPhone at all.
  • Reply 11 of 163
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Damn_Its_Hot View Post


    I get it that to some folks they feel limited and they want to hack the iPhone. I also see what has happened with the android OS and am glad I am in this walled garden, no virus protection needed, not much in the app store as far as stolen content or apps, malware or the like. Thanks, but no thanks, I'll keep my iPhone.



    BTW: I am also a developer.



    You are one overly trusting fool. There are as many or more security issues with a non-jailbroken phone as one that has been jailbroken and had the standard passwords changed.
  • Reply 12 of 163
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Hodar View Post


    I bought my iPhone from AT&T for $200

    I pay my monthly AT&T bill of $113

    I jailbreak my phone



    Now, books I have purchased for ~$15 each are not viewable?



    How is this not extortion? What I am doing (jailbreaking) is perfectly legal. What Apple has done, is denying me the ability to view a book I have legitimately paid for.



    This is nothing short of extortion. Now, this will create a new effort by people to crack the DRM on iBooks; and when the DRM is broken on iBooks - this will create a new Book piracy industry that does not exist today.



    As we used to say in grade school - "Nice move, Ex-lax"



    It's not extortion because they are not telling you to pay $x amount to "restore" anything. You can do that on your own.
  • Reply 13 of 163
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Hodar View Post


    I bought my iPhone from AT&T for $200

    I pay my monthly AT&T bill of $113

    I jailbreak my phone



    Now, books I have purchased for ~$15 each are not viewable?



    How is this not extortion? What I am doing (jailbreaking) is perfectly legal. What Apple has done, is denying me the ability to view a book I have legitimately paid for.



    This is nothing short of extortion. Now, this will create a new effort by people to crack the DRM on iBooks; and when the DRM is broken on iBooks - this will create a new Book piracy industry that does not exist today.



    As we used to say in grade school - "Nice move, Ex-lax"



    You seem to be an unfortunate victim, but I refuse to believe that the majority of jailbreakers don't pirate. There are people who want to run a few utilities not on the App Store, yes. But considering the widespread issue of piracy in general, I would put money on the majority of jailbreakers do it to get games and other software illegally.
  • Reply 14 of 163
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by sheff View Post


    not a big deal but a bad move i think. if i bought a book let me read it, crack down on illegal copies instead.



    Yep, I will no longer purchase any ebooks through Apple. I don't pirate apps or content, but I will buy through other sources.
  • Reply 15 of 163
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Elian Gonzalez View Post


    It's not extortion because they are not telling you to pay $x amount to "restore" anything. You can do that on your own.



    They are telling you that you can not use the device that you paid for in the way that you want to, even though your method of use is perfectly legal and does not cause harm to Apple or others.
  • Reply 16 of 163
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by the cool gut View Post


    Stop crying like a baby and thank your lucky stars Apple allows you to use a jailbroken iPhone at all.



    I want to point out, Apple is not allowing them to use a jailbroken phone, the courts are. Apple wants a completely closed system to keep their 30% coming. It might not be extortion, but I would be interested in the usage agreement that you acknowledge when you download the app. I suspect that the policy might conflict with what the courts have said that the iphone must be open.
  • Reply 17 of 163
    I'm not sure how pirating eBooks is a problem, you can technically do it without jailbreaking. ePub books are available all over and sync easily through iTunes.
  • Reply 18 of 163
    As a developer I work long hours on my apps to make them good, and to attract legitimate purchasers to purchase the apps so that I can get a reasonable return for my efforts.



    When I consistently see (as I do) that in excess of 25% of the running copies of my app are cracked (stolen) copies, it gives me reason to wish that Apple would come down much harder on the jailbreakers who facilitate app stealing, on the crackers who crack these apps, and on the websites that distribute them to the users who accept and use the stolen apps. Using stolen apps is no different than buying stolen cars, or from stealing the dollar bills directly out of my pocket.



    Jailbreaking, while perhaps not illegal in itself, is the key that facilitates app stealing.
  • Reply 19 of 163
    It's just me, or iBooks seems to be a mere POC for Apple JB-blocking code?



    Instead of whining about DRMed books, we should start be scared of time when the majority of services within iOS are just nonfunctional on JB'ed devices...





    It'll be a sub-cat and mouse game, inside a cat and mouse game...
  • Reply 20 of 163
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by the cool gut View Post


    Stop crying like a baby and thank your lucky stars Apple allows you to use a jailbroken iPhone at all.



    The law allows jailbreaking. It may be that what Apple has done is against the law. Time will tell.



    It looks like it is better to download a pirated copy of a book to view in iBooks rather than purchase the same title in the iBookstore.
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