Charlie Miller cleverly identified a unique security flaw in iOS recently and it cost him his membership to the iOS Developer Program.
Miller is an iOS security researcher and he created an app called InstaStock and submitted it into the App Store in September. On the surface, it allowed users to track their stocks, but behind the scenes it was doing quite a bit of dirty work. It downloaded third-party malware on the victim’s iPhone, and once installed, the code could access and edit sensitive data on the device or bring up random push notifications.
The app passed through Apple’s strict approval process, but was removed yesterday. Miller tweeted “OMG, Apple just kicked me out of the iOS Developer program. That’s so rude!” He could have seen this coming because Apple doesn’t often hold back on banning whoever and whatever necessary to preserve the quality of the App Store, but Miller claims he warned Apple about his security flaw discovery three weeks ago.
This brings up the debate regarding an application store approval process and whether Apple should have one in place. Clearly, it does have its benefits since Android doesn’t have control over the quality or content of the apps, but people like Charlie Miller can always attempt new ways of sneaking into Apple’s walled garden if they try hard enough. Stay safe out there, folks!