Tech

Apple Removes New Anti-Hacking Diagnostic App Over Claims Of Privacy Concerns

By Atarah Haely , May 17, 2016 04:00 AM EDT
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Apple has recently pulled out a newly released app from its App Store. The said diagnostic application would have alerted an iPhone user if their device has been hacked or jailbroken.

The "System and Security Info" application by Stefan Esser, founder of German firm SektionEins, has been removed from the Apple App Store several days after its release. Esser's diagnostic app's main function was to provide the iPhone owner important details about the device. These details include core information such as CPU, memory and disk usage, as stated in a report posted on CNET.

The said app can also provide a list of the processes that are currently running on an iPhone. Most importantly, Esser's System and Security Info application would have given a notification if the device has been hacked or jailbroken, including alerts for malware threats.

SektionEins' founder Esser made the revelation in a series of Twitter messages posted on Sunday, May 15, according to the same report. He also shared a screenshot of the details why Apple has pulled out the said app. Apple claimed that the app provided "potentially inaccurate and misleading diagnostic functionality for iOS devices."

Apple stated that there is no current "publicly available infrastructure to support iOS diagnostic analysis." Esser also shared Apple's claims that listing down the processes currently running on an iPhone is "considered a privacy violation," as stated in the report.

Esser also commented on the said social media site that Apple pulled out his diagnostics app because it "put a dent in 'unbreakable iOS.'" He even questioned why his app was the only one removed from the Apple App Store and not similar jailbreak status applications.

In an interview with Forbes, the SeiktionEins' founder commented that it was unclear why Apple decided to remove the app. However, he came up with plausible reasons why the tech company made the move. He stated that some of the functionality of his app may have highlighted issues that Apple's iOS 9.3.2 version "cannot fix."

Esser explained that Apple may have found themselves "too late" in releasing the needed patch to address the said issues. "So leaving our app in the store would make it very visible that they might not intend to fix the problems before iOS 10 which comes out in months," he added.

Meanwhile, Apple has yet to comment on Esser's claims.

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