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  • Comex and Apple Part Ways


    Apple fired Comex, creator of JailbreakMe, for not responding to an email. Seriously.

    The young hacker, and former Apple intern announced via Twitter today he parted ways with Apple after nearly a year as an intern with the company. Forbes followed up with Comex (Nicholas Allegra) and discovered Apple had offered him continued employment at the company as a remote intern.

    “He explained that the email he forgot to answer was an offer to continue his employment at Apple as a remote intern. At Apple, apparently, offer letters are taken rather seriously, and Allegra soon learned that his had been rescinded. "I wasn't too happy about it, but it didn't seem like I was able to fix it," he says. "So that's what it is."

    Comex didn't comment on what he worked on during his two internships at Apple last fall and this past summer, and hinted to Forbes that there was more to his leaving Apple than a missed email. However, his email to Forbes claimed “it wasn’t a bad ending.”

    The split does seem unfortunate for Apple considering the high-praise Comex garnered from those in the security industry and within Apple’s own ranks. Unfortunately for the Jailbreak community it doesn’t appear Comex will return to iOS jailbreaking (JailbreakMe 4 anyone?) as Allegra claims he’s returning to Brown to finish his studies.

    The conditions of Comex’s employment at Apple likely prevents him from any future Jailbreak work. On Apple anyways. A cryptic Tweet sent out by Comex reads “I hear the Wii U is coming out in a month.”

    Watch out Nintendo.

    Source: Forbes
    This article was originally published in forum thread: Comex and Apple Part Ways started by Phillip Swanson View original post
    Comments 58 Comments
    1. Torinate's Avatar
      Torinate -
      So, when apple has responded to my several emails about the horrible maps app, what should I do? They've made it quite clear...
    1. Andaz's Avatar
      Andaz -
      He's been hypnotized by apple and been thrown by apple. Just saying.
    1. ZXMustang's Avatar
      ZXMustang -
      Not a single **** was given over this dumb thread.
    1. mmaboi21's Avatar
      mmaboi21 -
      Quote Originally Posted by ZXMustang View Post
      Not a single **** was given over this dumb thread.
      That's optimistic.
    1. unison999's Avatar
      unison999 -
      Quote Originally Posted by szr View Post
      1) He should no longer be bound to any such terms after the termination of his employment. NDA's only apply to work internal to the company in question, no what an employee works on when no longer employed there. Apple simply would have no legal right to enforce such a mandate even if it was part of his employment contract, since that contract is null and void when said employment ceases to exist.
      I know for a fact that I am right, because I had similar contract and it was explained to me by my lawyer. There was a lot of renegotiating before I signed, I bet Comex did not get a lawyer and signed whatever was put in front of him.
      Also getting fired or quit do not release you from your obligations per term on the contract, once he signed that contract he is screwed.

      Quote Originally Posted by spazturtle View Post
      He was only an intern you have to be an employee for those contracts to work.
      No you don't, if he signed a contract he is screwed. Considering what he did before working for Apple, they definitely protect themselves with a contract.
    1. spazturtle's Avatar
      spazturtle -
      Quote Originally Posted by unison999 View Post
      I know for a fact that I am right, because I had similar contract and it was explained to me by my lawyer. There was a lot of renegotiating before I signed, I bet Comex did not get a lawyer and signed whatever was put in front of him.
      Also getting fired or quit do not release you from your obligations per term on the contract, once he signed that contract he is screwed.



      No you don't, if he signed a contract he is screwed. Considering what he did before working for Apple, they definitely protect themselves with a contract.
      Contracts like that are not legally binding, You can't just take away random people rights, he isn't nor has he ever been employed by Apple.
      If I got you to sing a contract saying that you could not work in this field you could walk away and break it.
    1. kyphur's Avatar
      kyphur -
      Quote Originally Posted by spazturtle View Post
      Contracts like that are not legally binding, You can't just take away random people rights, he isn't nor has he ever been employed by Apple.
      A contract where Comex agrees that he can't divulge or otherwise use the information he is privy to during his internship is perfectly legal. Apple's code and internal workings of the iDevices are in fact proprietary intellectual property that nobody has the right to access. For a contact to be legal each party gives up something and receives something. Comex received access the that property and gave up the ability to use it outside of Apple-land. Apple received access to a prolific jailbreaker and gave up access to that property therefore the contract would be enforceable.

      Apple would have good cause for legal action (assuming there is such a contact) if Comex contributes to an iOS 6 Jailbreak or A5/A6 exploit assuming he was given access to these. Now once iOS 7 is out Apple would be on shaky legal ground and definitely have no standing on exploits for processors after he parted ways with Apple.
    1. spazturtle's Avatar
      spazturtle -
      Quote Originally Posted by kyphur View Post
      A contract where Comex agrees that he can't divulge or otherwise use the information he is privy to during his internship is perfectly legal. Apple's code and internal workings of the iDevices are in fact proprietary intellectual property that nobody has the right to access. For a contact to be legal each party gives up something and receives something. Comex received access the that property and gave up the ability to use it outside of Apple-land. Apple received access to a prolific jailbreaker and gave up access to that property therefore the contract would be enforceable.

      Apple would have good cause for legal action (assuming there is such a contact) if Comex contributes to an iOS 6 Jailbreak or A5/A6 exploit assuming he was given access to these. Now once iOS 7 is out Apple would be on shaky legal ground and definitely have no standing on exploits for processors after he parted ways with Apple.
      I think I remember comex saying that he never actually worked with code at apple.
    1. kyphur's Avatar
      kyphur -
      Quote Originally Posted by spazturtle View Post
      I think I remember comex saying that he never actually worked with code at apple.
      Which very well may be the case but even so he still might be restricted if Apple can say he "had access" to it or anything the contributed to it's design.

      The bottom line here that only Comex and Apple know what he may have signed and what restrictions, if any, are currently on him.

      Even more relevant to the discussion is that everyone knows Apple will drop lawyers on even the smallest of legal standings.

      Finally, just to sum it up: Yes NDAs (Non Disclosure Agreements) can prevent a person from divulging or using information they have been allowed to access.
    1. mmaboi21's Avatar
      mmaboi21 -
      Quote Originally Posted by spazturtle View Post
      I think I remember comex saying that he never actually worked with code at apple.
      That can't be true. I know for a fact that he has delved in code.
    1. szr's Avatar
      szr -
      Quote Originally Posted by kyphur View Post
      A contract where Comex agrees that he can't divulge or otherwise use the information he is privy to during his internship is perfectly legal. Apple's code and internal workings of the iDevices are in fact proprietary intellectual property that nobody has the right to access. For a contact to be legal each party gives up something and receives something. Comex received access the that property and gave up the ability to use it outside of Apple-land. Apple received access to a prolific jailbreaker and gave up access to that property therefore the contract would be enforceable.

      Apple would have good cause for legal action (assuming there is such a contact) if Comex contributes to an iOS 6 Jailbreak or A5/A6 exploit assuming he was given access to these. Now once iOS 7 is out Apple would be on shaky legal ground and definitely have no standing on exploits for processors after he parted ways with Apple.
      This may be true, but if a jailbreak did come out and he did contribute to it and such a contract did exist, Apple would have a very difficult time being able to prove that it was in fact him and not someone else who provided such knowledge, as there are other knowledgeable people in the JB community. Even an entity as large as Apple cannot just initiate a court case without any actual evidence.
    1. kyphur's Avatar
      kyphur -
      Quote Originally Posted by szr View Post
      This may be true, but if a jailbreak did come out and he did contribute to it and such a contract did exist, Apple would have a very difficult time being able to prove that it was in fact him and not someone else who provided such knowledge, as there are other knowledgeable people in the JB community. Even an entity as large as Apple cannot just initiate a court case without any actual evidence.
      That's easy for you to say when it's someone else's behind on the line.
    1. szr's Avatar
      szr -
      Quote Originally Posted by kyphur View Post
      On an internal corporate system receipt and even being read can be confirmed server-side...
      If he is no longer employed, then most likely wouldn't have access to Apple's internal systems. What I was talking about was, hypothetically, Apple proving that an iOS 6 jailbreak came to be because of what Comex may have learned and it didn't come to be because of the knowledge and reliance of others.
    1. kyphur's Avatar
      kyphur -
      Quote Originally Posted by szr View Post
      If he is no longer employed, then most likely wouldn't have access to Apple's internal systems.
      Why do you assume Apple would wait until AFTER he left the company to extend an offer to continue the internship?

      Quote Originally Posted by szr View Post
      What I was talking about was, hypothetically, Apple proving that an iOS 6 jailbreak came to be because of what Comex may have learned and it didn't come to be because of the knowledge and reliance of others.
      Anything is possible. If Apple was concerned that Comex might be a leak they could simply allow him access to "planted info" which would be reflected in a jailbreak. This is a common counter-espionage tactic which provides traceable evidence of the leak's source.

      Simply put, never assume that anything can't be tracked back to the source...
    1. lighter's Avatar
      lighter -
      Ahhh NOOO.. theres something called a NDA... and I am sure apple being a billion dollar company did make him sign of those.. so I am SURE you won't be seeing comex's name attached to a Jailbreak for at least 2 years at minimum.....

      Its not about how dumb comex is.. its about a business that will protect its intellectual property... and we've all seen how far Apple goes to protect it...

      so sir your comment below is very very wrong....


      Quote Originally Posted by slangg_ View Post
      Are you guys that slow ?!

      Comex Contractual Agreement ceased when Apple terminated their Contract (yes it was done with both parts).

      For all we know, Comex is already Jailbreaking iPhones ... You really think he would sign something that would prevent him Jailbreaking an Apple device for 2, 3, 5 or 10 years AFTER leaving Apple ?! Man smarten up a little bit!

      "Apple played Comex" well both of them played themselves or you really think he was there clocking his hours and doing assignments and **** ?! Comex now knows A LOT about Apple than any of us do and will use this to His (and ours) Advantage soon .........
    1. szr's Avatar
      szr -
      Quote Originally Posted by kyphur View Post
      Anything is possible. If Apple was concerned that Comex might be a leak they could simply allow him access to "planted info" which would be reflected in a jailbreak. This is a common counter-espionage tactic which provides traceable evidence of the leak's source.
      The sort of tactics you're refering to are used when you're trying to figure out if a rival company is being leaked info pertaining to your products. I really don't believe it would work very well against a group like the jailbreak devs. If the exposed information is fake, then no jailbreak could possibly come of it. If it's genuine information that could lead to a jailbreak, then the company in question (Apple in this case) would have a very difficult time proving that someone else in the jailbreak community hadn't discovered such an exploit themselves.
    1. xclusiveiphone's Avatar
      xclusiveiphone -
      They milked him of everything he knows and tossed him out the window.
      Only way he can get back at Apple is make a jailbreak.
    1. mmaboi21's Avatar
      mmaboi21 -
      Quote Originally Posted by xclusiveiphone View Post
      They milked him of everything he knows and tossed him out the window.
      Only way he can get back at Apple is make a jailbreak.
      Like a cow with no nipples.