A Google developer is celebrating an Apple success today. That is, the iPhone maker has finally enabled HTTPS for all of its App Store today, fixing a number of vulnerabilities the Google developer discovered and reported.
Elie Bursztein discovered and reported the issue to Apple in “early July 2012,” according a blog post by the developer. He said that by not having HTTPS enabled across of all of the network traffic from Apple’s App Store, it opened itself (and its customers) up to a number of attacks. This includes password stealing, tricking a user to download an unwanted app, preventing app downloads or app updates, and stealing information about what apps are on a device.
An attacker only needs to be on the same network as the person who is using the App Store. From there, they can intercept the communications between the device and the App Store and insert their own commands, achieving the desired trickery. In the case of stealing a person’s Apple ID password, the attacker would only need to insert a fake prompt for the password when the person boots up the App Store. They are then tricked into thinking that opening the App Store is what caused the password prompt, and thus trust it.
Check out the video below to see Bursztein demonstrate this attack.
Apple, according to Bursztein, has finally turned on HTTPS, veritably plugging up these holes that fuel these attacks as well.
Usually, the Android system is the one dinged with criticisms about security. According to a recent study by security research firm F-Secure, 72 percent of mobile malware can be attributed to Android. But research such as Bursztein’s shows that nothing is really 100 percent safe, not even iOS.
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