Tempted to jailbreak your device? You should probably reconsider

Apple has today published a stern reminder of the dangers of using custom software modifications to change the way iOS works.

Unbeknownst to most Apple customers, there’s a huge community based around a particular form of iOS modding called “jailbreaking.” Users who jailbreak their iPhones and iPads are able to install apps that don’t meet App Store guidelines, and they’re also able to install tweaks to customize the experience. Many users jailbreak their iPhones in order to unlock functionality that doesn’t normally exist in iOS, or to redesign the Lock screen or Control Center beyond normal constraints.

Users have been waiting years for Apple to add a “dark mode” to iOS, but there’s no sign of an official release of this feature. By comparison, those with jailbroken devices have had access to a home-brewed dark mode for years. That’s just one reason people choose to essentially hack their own devices to enable modifications.

However, this process goes against all iOS guidelines and Apple has long been at war with the jailbreak community, blocking attempts to hack into iOS with each new release. However, jailbreakers eventually tend to find a way in and continue their modding efforts regardless.

This latest support article from Apple highlights the dangers of such an approach, noting that unauthorized modifications will not only void your device warranty but could potentially cause all manner of security issues.

“Jailbreaking your device eliminates security layers designed to protect your personal information and your iOS device. With this security removed from your iOS device, hackers may steal your personal information, damage your device, attack your network, or introduce malware, spyware, or viruses.”

Modding could also result in iOS working less efficiently than normal, which in turn can lead to lower battery life, more crashes, and less reliable call signal. In some cases, the damage done by a modification is enough to render the device “permanently inoperable” when subsequent updates roll out.

Jailbreaking is an interesting concept, and occasionally the creativity of these iOS hackers results in new features that end up in the official versions of iOS at a later date. But this latest article from Apple really hammers home the fact that any kind of software modification is a huge risk that could leave your device bricked and your personal data vulnerable.

Our advice? Don’t even think about it.