We all know the history of the iPhone 4 prototype that was left in a bar, ruining what could have been one of the biggest surprises in Apple's history.
But, have you heard about the prototype of stolen iPhones that are still in involuntary hands? In this case, the hackers try to find ways to enter Apple's operating system.
The focus of a new investigation from Motherboard this week, which states that there is now a gray market for the "dev merged" iPhone prototypes that have been stolen from Apple's production lines. According to the report, they are devices that have a unique value to help security researchers find vulnerabilities because they run a less enhanced version of the operating system in which it is trivial to gain access to the root.
Sources on the motherboard say that the "switchboard" phones (an iPhone X merged with a single dev that costs $ 1,800) have already been used to help develop handheld Cellebrite machines that, according to It is reported, used by the police agencies to access the phones. Originally, it was thought that Cellebrite was the company that helped the FBI to decipher an iPhone 5C that belonged to a terrorist from San Bernadino in 2016, although it was later refuted, the FBI paid an unknown party more than $ 1 million to enter that phone.
And, says Motherboard sources, these stolen phones were the way security researchers could study the security coprocessor of Apple's Secure Enclave in 2017, potentially exposing vulnerabilities in the explicitly designed chip to keep iPhones safe.
There is much more in the complete story of Motherboard .