Remotely jailbreak iphone 4S and spy?

Posted on 2012-08-20
Last Modified: 2013-09-25
Hi all,

I'm having a problem with somebody accessing my main email without my consent. I have done all the usual things with changing passwords and adding 2 step log in process and the like but it keeps going on.

This email I have set up to be accessed from my iphone.

Without going into too much detail I have noticed that somebody seems to be snooping through my text messages as well.

Naturally this concerns me greatly.

According to what I have learned today it looks like your iphone can be jailbreaked remotely without users consent or knowledge and I can only imagine that from there it is a short jump to installing mobile monitoring software remotely.

Is there a way for me to check if my phone has been jailbroken? And if so, what can I do to see what software they use and where it is going?

I am under the impression that resetting the phone back to "factory default" will at least remove said software and lock phone again. Is this correct?

I know this sorta sounds like paranoia, but I have plenty of reason to suspect something is going on.

Thank you.
Question by:thirtywinter
    LVL 39

    Expert Comment

    I do not believe it is possible to jailbreak an iPhone remotely without access to the physical device BUT if you want to then resetting the iPhone back to factory default will do exactly what it says.. remove all apps and settings and set it up like new.

    I'm not aware of any 'monitoring' software for the iPhone like Activity Monitor on OSX or Task Manager on Windows.  Most iOS applications are isolated from each other so cross-scripting is restricted.

    The most likely exploits are where someone can access your email account via the web interface rather than the iPhone.   If they have your passwords then cycling them is a good idea.
    LVL 14

    Accepted Solution

    I say it is not impossible to jailbreak a device remotely. If somebody has access to your iPhone they may also have access to your laptop/PC. Therefore they could have jailbreak your device through your laptop/PC once you have connected your iDevice!
    If you want to check whether your device has been jailbroken or not, try redsn0w (available at:
    As you can see in the picture when you are trying to jailbreak a jailbroken device, it informs you with an error.

    Redsn0w detects jailbroken iDeviceIf you are assured that your device is not jailbroken then I say there is no way to hack your device like that. Probably the story is completely happening in a different way e.g. somebody has access to your laptop though email, etc... or a simple key-logger on your laptop/PC is doing all these stuff.

    Author Comment

    If I download and run redsn0w and my phone is not jailbroken will it jailbreak the phone or will that error message occur before me being given the option to jailbreak?

    Let me add another question, is a jailbroken phone more secure than a locked one if you take proper precautions? And if so what would those be?
    LVL 14

    Expert Comment

    by:Hamidreza Vakilian
    If your device is not jailbroken when you press the Jailbreak button it will require you to put your iphone in DFU mode; then you can cancel it if you would not like to jailbreak.

    A jailbroken iDevice is never more secure!  Malicious softwares can not come into a normal iOS, but a jailbroken device is susceptible to any malware, e.g. a trojan or some key logger can be easily installed through Cydia or SSH, etc..
    LVL 39

    Expert Comment

    As was stated previously the computer that you connect the iPhone into is more likely to be the source of any hack.  Hacking an iPhone will always make it more insecure as you are opening additional ways to access your device and apps installed from outside the AppStore are not regulated or vetted for spyware etc.

    Author Comment

    I apologize for not getting back to you on this sooner. I have been having a somewhat hectic and disturbing time lately.

    I did download redsn0w 0.9.14 b2 and I did not get any warning like was shown earlier, so I'm assuming that means that the device is not jailbroken. Would that be a fair assumption?

    I have had several other things happen in regards to this very interesting situation. Chiefly among all is that I know that somebody have broken into my home about 2 months ago apparently with the intent of finding passwords and I'm assuming having access to my personal computers. Nothing that I know of have been stolen or taken.

    A fair question at this point is how do I know somebody broke into my home and the time frame? Here is the really crazy part; somebody dropped of an envelope in my mailbox addressed to my wife and inside was a picture of a handwritten note in my handwriting containing certain login credentials. Also, I can tell that the picture is taken with the note resting on my desk. And by the user/password combinations I can make a reasonable assumption as to date.

    I also remember writing this note and also hiding it in one of my drawers. So not only was my house broken into, but they took their time looking for anything like this.

    I have of course installed cameras, changed locks etc at this point. I have also contacted law enforcement as this is now a safety concern.

    The good news in all this is that I have caught an unknown IP address accessing one of my accounts I left unchanged (For this very purpose) so at least this is a start. (Not that I'm hoping for miracles or anything)

    Write Comment

    Please enter a first name

    Please enter a last name

    We will never share this with anyone.

    Featured Post

    Why You Should Analyze Threat Actor TTPs

    After years of analyzing threat actor behavior, it’s become clear that at any given time there are specific tactics, techniques, and procedures (TTPs) that are particularly prevalent. By analyzing and understanding these TTPs, you can dramatically enhance your security program.

    Suggested Solutions

    Article by: Ph0en1x3
    Abstract - With Apple producing millions of units annually, it might make good business sense to become an Apple Certified Development center. The iPhone, iPad, and iPod consistently use the same SDK and development methodologies and this process al…
         Intro      In this article, I will show you how to parse a JSON in Swift using an open source library called SwiftyJSON ( If you haven't heard of a JSON before, it stands for JavaScript Object Notation…
    This video discusses moving either the default database or any database to a new volume.
    Access reports are powerful and flexible. Learn how to create a query and then a grouped report using the wizard. Modify the report design after the wizard is done to make it look better. There will be another video to explain how to put the final p…

    758 members asked questions and received personalized solutions in the past 7 days.

    Join the community of 500,000 technology professionals and ask your questions.

    Join & Ask a Question

    Need Help in Real-Time?

    Connect with top rated Experts

    11 Experts available now in Live!

    Get 1:1 Help Now