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The ease of faking a jailbreak


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Jul 28, 2011
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The Land of Ice and Snow
Alright, so as time goes on and we are still without a jailbreak for A5 devices, it is becoming increasingly common that people on Twitter claim to have a jailbreak, but they are lying. One might ask "whats the point of faking a jailbreak?" The answer to that is simple. Publicity and money. As soon as anyone claims they have a jailbreak, they immediately get tons of attention and hundreds if not thousands of followers. Of course this is only temporary, but the 15 minutes of fame is enough to feed their egos. Most of the fakers are too stupid to even know how to monetize a fake jailbreak, but there are some out there that do it for the money too. Making thousands of people believe you have a jailbreak and forcing them to fill out a survey(earning them money) to download the fake jailbreak is an amazingly fast way to make a few thousand dollars.

I am here to tell you how to increase your abilities at spotting the fakes.

PART 1: Fake jailbreak claims

Rule 1) If someone claims they have a jailbreak but refuse to release a video, it's fake. Images are easy to fake(as I am about to show you). A video is much harder to fake(although still possible). With a video you would have to show the viewers that you can open the apps and that they are functional(to eliminate the possibility that they are simply displaying an image or a video on their device).

Rule 2) If they announce an ETA, it is most likely fake. The reason is that if they had it done, they would just release it, they wouldnt set an ETA if they werent finished because its impossible to determine what kinds of speed bumps you may run into. The ONLY time that an actual hacker would set an ETA would be if they are done with the jailbreak but a new iOS is coming out soon so they want to wait until after the new iOS is released before they release the jailbreak so as not to give Apple a chance to patch the exploit before releasing the new firmware.

Rule 3) Follow the known and trusted devs on Twitter. If someone who is not known or trusted (like ion1c) comes into the scene, the established hackers will let you know if they are legit or not.

Finally, I wanted to demonstrate how incredibly easy it is to fake an image. Below you will see a picture of my "iPhone5 jailbroken on iOS6." The actual device is an iPhone4S on 5.0, so as you can see, the device doesnt even need to be jailbreakable in order to fake a jailbreak on it. I made this fake jailbreak in about 2 minutes. This is likely the exact method @iHackman007 used for his fake jailbreak image.


PART 2: How to determine if a jailbreak VIDEO is fake:

As I said earlier, it is harder to fake a jailbreak video, but it still does happen. In fact, it happened yesterday. A French team claimed to have a working untethered jailbreak for all devices on 5.0 and 5.0.1. They released a video on YouTube to prove that they had a jailbreak but it was quickly discredited.

With this video it was easy to discredit since it is very painfully obvious that all they did was repackage Redsn0w with a different boot image.

Some things to look for in a video:

Rule 1) They should begin on the springboard of the phone and then open Cydia to show you that Cydia is working(not just a fake icon) and also they will scroll to the bottom of Cydia to prove what device and firmware they are on.

Rule 2) Nothing should be blurred or hidden in the video(with the exception of serial numbers or other info that could be used for identification). In the case of this "French Team" the entire screen of their computer was blurred/hidden except for the very bottom loading bar of the application that was supposedly their jailbreak tool. It was determined by a viewer that this was actually the loading bar of a virus scan program that they tried to pass off as a jailbreak tool.

Rule 3) Watch time indicators(such as clocks, the time on the device, etc.) An easy way to fake a jailbreak video is to have a stationary camera and then turn the camera off and swap in a jailbroken device. This has been done in the past by fake jailbreakers and they were discredited simply because the time was jumping around in their video.

Rule 4) If they are claiming that it is an untethered jailbreak make sure that in the video they reboot the phone without booting tethered. This French team claimed their jailbreak was untethered yet in the video you can clearly see them reboot tethered. It's not until the very END of the video(after installing semi-tether) that they actually do an untethered boot(but they dont show Cydia or Safari working which makes it obvious that they simply booted semi-tethered).

Rule 5) If all the above check out or it is still inconclusive look for the download link(if there is one) in the YouTube description. When you click it does it make you fill out a survey to download? Or once you download it does it make you fill out a survey to get the password to extract it? If so, it's fake. People get money each time someone fills out those surveys so they release fake videos to convince people the jailbreak is real so that they'll fill out the survey.

Rule 6) If the video has a lot of likes and positive comments try posting a comment yourself. If it says "pending approval" it is fake. Either the uploader made a bunch of YouTube accounts and left positive comments on their own video or they hired other people to leave positive feedback. If they set the comments to wait for approval it's pretty clear that they are weeding out all the comments that claim that the jailbreak is fake. Also, if a bunch of the positive comments were all posted at the same time, thats another sign that it is fraudulent positive feedback.

I hope this helps some of you newer members determine whether you're getting your chain pulled or not ;)
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Yes, very informative write-up!! This is going into my "quick links for noobs" folder. :)
I just now seen this thread..............Nice;)
Hi I found some video in you tube , with tell the fake method for Jailbreak iPhone 5. is very good. :)

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Even meeting all of that criteria doesn't make it real.
It would take less than an hour for anyone with a dev account to create a UIWebView
app that opens the real Cydia page, and that could even be packaged with the legit Cydia icon.

For a Cydia app to be proven legit, it would actually have to install an app that was not present
before Cydia was launched.

The media player video I posted here today is a good example.
(Looks to be deleted... don't know why)
I could have gone telling everyone is was a tweak to the stock media player,
rather than an app that mocks the stock media player, and it would be a pretty good fake.
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Great write up. But there are some devs (who are only now well known but weren't originally) who can deliver the goods but never post video proof, like Planetbeing,

But 99% are fakes as you've pointed out.