According to a paper published by German researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute Secure Information Technology, it is possible to hack an iPhone and steal all kinds of stored passwords from it within six minutes.
This only requires two things: Physical access to the phone and a computer to jailbreak the phone. And the most interesting thing is that even setting a passcode on your device cannot stop that. The researchers used the following exploit steal the stored passwords:
a. They connected the iPhone to a PC and unlocked it by Jail breaking.
b. Installed a SSH server on device without affecting the existing user data.
c. Now this is the most interesting step. They ran a script using SSH server, which tricked the OS into accessing the keychains from inside. Since the keychains storing the password are accessed naturally from inside the OS, this hack bypasses the need for any reverse engineering.
d. Simply output the information obtained from script on your computer.
Here is a video demonstrating this whole process:
Understandably, the script which steals this information has not been made public by the researchers but one can easily assume that something is not out of reach making the sensitive and important information stored on the phone not so secure. It should be noted though, that stored passwords on internet pages are more hard to retrieve.
Lesson learned: Change all your passwords if your iPhone is stolen rather than relying on your hard-to-guess passcode to protect that information !!
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