Jailbreaking your iPhone or iPad is generally a pretty safe process, however there are a few risks with Jailbreaking and Cydia to watch out for. With the rise of untethered jailbreaks it’s easier than ever to get complete control over your Apple device with only a few clicks. There are a few things that could go wrong in the process, and some general risks to keep in mind before you start.
Just to be clear, one of the risks of installing Cydia Jailbreak is not a “bricked” or physically broken phone or tablet. Every iPhone or iPad that has Cydia installed, even if the installation process goes wrong or is interrupted, can be restored back to the factory settings quickly and easily. This process only alters the software on the device, and there is no potential to ruin your device at all.
Corrupt Operating System
Cydia replaces the iOS operating system with one that has been patched to allow you to download apps outside of the official app store. The fact that it replaces the operating system means that, if something were to go wrong during the installation, your device wouldn’t boot up properly and would instead show a blank screen.
Lost Data And Settings
One of the largest risks of jailbreaking your device is simply losing your downloaded data. Depending on your settings, your contacts and probably the pictures in your camera roll are already backed up on Apple’s servers. If you have anything else downloaded on your device, make sure you have a copy of it before you begin jailbreaking since the device will be restored to factory defaults after the jailbroken OS is installed. It’s also a good idea to take note of any special settings you have enabled, since those will be reset too.
If you ever have to return or repair an Apple product and they happen to note that your version of iOS is jailbroken, the odds are good that they’ll void your warranty on the spot. Although jailbreaking your device is entirely legal, there’s nothing in the law that compels Apple to offer a warranty on jailbroken devices. If at all possible, you should restore your device back to a factory operating system before having it serviced.
Installing apps from Cydia could leave your device with glaring security flaws. Although it’s uncommon for an app to do this maliciously, sometimes mistakes are made when developing these programs. One of these mistakes, which Apple themselves made, was leaving the device’s internal password set to “alpine” for every model. This means that if you were to install a remote shell, like SSH, anyone with your device’s IP address could log in and gain access to your photos and data. If you plan on installing SSH then be sure to change your device’s root and user password to something other than the default, or you’re just asking for trouble.
Frequent App Crashes
One of the largest problems that Cydia users tend to run into is with applications that crash, sometimes frequently. For all of their shortcomings, Apple does carefully examine every app in their official store, testing it on various iPhones and iPads in order to make sure it runs well. Cydia doesn’t subject their applications to the same level of scrutiny, so in some cases you’ll need to look for alternatives to an app you’ve downloaded in order to find one that runs well on your Apple device.