30 May 2024

The Truth of iOS Game Hacking in 2024

A common concept that comes up regarding hacking mobile and handheld devices is that iOS is innately more secure than Android. Now, in part, there is some truth to this. iOS hacking and iOS game hacking does have several barriers of entry to it, requiring a jailbroken iOS device to even begin the attempt. It’s also a closed system and community. So, it is safer. Right?  

But is that true? Well, there’ve been several changes to the way iOS operates. Legislation and enforced transparency has changed the way many companies must operate. Apple is no exception. For several years now, the requirement of a jailbroken iOS device has vanished. The early hurdles and financial barriers to iOS devices that stopped so many potential hackers is gone.  

Let’s take a look at iOS game hacking in 2024 and if there’s any truth to the statement “iOS is more secure than Android.”  

Hacking iOS Games and iOS Apps

Even in Cyrex’ early days, iOS hacking wasn’t something that was talked about much. The co-founders, Mat and Tim, both noticed a distinct lack of iOS hacking discussion even in their cybersecurity education. It was all focused on Android hacking. As a result, from the beginning of Cyrex, iOS hacking was thoroughly researched and a process was developed. It’s a process that has stayed with Cyrex and evolves even to today.  

The question is, why isn’t iOS hacking talked about more? Why is its lack of discussion support to the statement that it is more secure.  

The truth is it isn’t! It just had several barriers and closed gates that hackers had to get through and climb over. Just like domestic theft or break-ins, most cybersecurity is opportunistic. If your game requires a separate iOS device, which then needs to be jailbroken, you’ve already deterred huge swathes of script kiddies and amateur hackers.   

On top of that, once you finally get in and can begin hacking, it’s a closed system as well. It needs to be researched, investigated, and probed for how it operates. There’s enough financial and technical hurdles to cut down the number of any hacking community.  

What changed in the iOS hacking scene?

As we mentioned, ruling and legislative bodies have long been trying to ensure transparency and user safety among digital companies. This has meant the gates to iOS hacking have been opened, there are fewer barriers than ever before. A jailbroken device is no longer needed.  

As of 2017, with a stock iPhone, you can install your own certificates and begin performing Man in the Middle attacks immediately. This is a huge change in the cybersecurity world and one that is still not being talked about. The innate security is effectively hamstrung. It opens the doors for vulnerabilities to be found and exploited.  

This misconception is, almost comically, still aiding the security of iOS. Where even hackers aren’t talking about it. However, iOS security is on a countdown to this being widespread knowledge. It is no longer a protected community. iOS game hacking is on the table for even aspiring script kiddies. Due to this lack of awareness on all sides, it does mean apps are innately less secure. There isn’t the threat of hacking to inspire security measure and client-side hardening.  

The Impact of Sideloading Applications onto iOS devices

Around the end of 2019, we saw AltStore go live, allowing sideloading of applications onto iOS. This means you can install an app onto your device that did not come from the Apple Store. Once requiring jailbreaking and extra steps, now it is doable by anyone.  

What this means is if you can sideload apps onto the device – you can then easily extract them from your iPhone as well. Opened on your PC, code can be tweaked, modifications made, behaviours altered. Once done, it is simply reuploaded onto your device. Once the game is running again, unless you have the proper checks and balances, it’s an easy way to compromise your operation.  

The Future of iOS Security

The future against iOS hacking is the same as other platforms. At Cyrex, we advise server-side validation and any client-side hardening you can utilize.  

If you’re uncertain about what steps to take or where your application might be vulnerable, our team of expert security engineers have been hacking and securing iOS devices since Cyrex has been running. You can be assured in our comprehensive and evolving knowledge of all things iOS for hacking and cybersecurity.  

We’d like to reiterate that iOS is not insecure, it is not an open book for hackers and malicious actors. It is simply more accessible than ever before, given the requirements Apple must now fulfil. These changes are rarely considered in the cybersecurity space. Changes that leave iOS devices open to attempted hacks and thus leaving developers and their users at risk. The gates are open for the casual, opportunistic hackers. All it takes is one to get through!

So, get in touch with Cyrex today for your iOS security needs. Our thorough penetration testing expertise will ensure your iOS game or application will be as secure as possible against any potential hacker or malicious actor.