If you’ve followed the jailbreak scene for any extended amount of time, you know that it takes a person with high-level skills to exploit iOS. There’s only a handful of people in the world that can do it, and let’s just say they’re very, very talented.
So it shouldn’t come as a surprise that planetbeing—one of the 4 members of the evad3rs—was recognized at this year’s Black Hat hacking convention. He took home the Pwnie for privilege escalation, which was used in the evasi0n jailbreak…
Here’s MuscleNerd’s congratulatory tweet:
— MuscleNerd (@MuscleNerd) August 1, 2013
Planetbeing, who’s real name is David Wang, has been a staple in the jailbreak community for quite some time. This year, he teamed up with MuscleNerd, pod2g and pimskeks to form the evad3rs, which created the evasi0n jailbreak for Apple’s iOS 6.
In an interview with Forbes earlier this year, planetbeing explained that evasi0n takes advantage of at least 5 bugs in iOS 6′s code. For reference, that’s one more than the Stuxnet malware developed by the NSA uses to attack Nuclear centrifuges.
Here he explains a bit about how the hack works:
“Evasi0n begins by running libimobiledevice, a program that substitutes for iTunes to communicate with iOS devices via the same protocol as Apple’s program. Using that tool, Evasi0n exploits a bug in iOS’s mobile backup system to gain access to certain settings that it normally shouldn’t be able to access, namely a file that indicates the device’s time zone.”
The evasi0n jailbreak tool landed on February 4 of this year and worked on a wide range of iPhones and iPads. It was responsible for hacking over 20 million devices, and withstood two software updates, before Apple finally killed it by releasing iOS 6.1.3.
At the time of this writing, the Pwnie website hadn’t been updated with the winners yet, so we don’t have many details on planetbeing’s award or who else won. Regardless, it’s nice to see these guys getting some recognition for their hard work.