iPhone kill-switch kill switch released

August 19, 2008 // 12:46 p.m.

Tags: #apple #blacklist #bossprefs #cydia #iphone #jailbreak #jailbroken #kill-switch #killswitch

If you've been panicking about the now-confirmed “kill-switch” blacklist hidden deep inside the Apple iPhone, some good news: it's been cracked wide open already.

Gizmodo reports that one-click functionality to enable and disable the built-in application blacklist functionality has now been built into the latest BossPrefs package, available on third-party installation system Cydia.

It's not all plain sailing, however: because Cydia – and, by extension, BossPrefs – is not an Apple-approved application, you can only run the tool on a jailbroken iPhone. If you were hoping for a way to prevent an iPhone running the standard software checking in with Apple for applications to be blacklisted, you'll have to wait a while longer.

BossPrefs isn't the only way to disable the blacklist functionality, either – although it is the easiest. An alternative, which again requires a jailbroken unit, is to convince the unit that the domain from which the blacklist is downloaded is a loopback address by editing the /etc/hosts file – although this is for the more technically minded only. Much easier to just install BossPrefs and hit the 'neuter' button.

Whether or not you agree with the intent behind the hidden blacklist, it is a cause for concern that the functionality can be disabled so easily – and transparently – by third-party software.

Will you be using BossPrefs to prevent Apple fiddling with your 'phone apps from afar, or does the functionality not bother you enough to want to disable it? Share your thoughts over in the forums.

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