Determining the safety of Cydia tweaks can be tedious affair, but you’re not alone! There’s an entire community here with you!
Lets face it, jailbreaking reduces the security of your device by it’s nature. It does this by handing the keys to the kingdom to the user, so to speak.
When you have root access to a system, making one simple mistake can cause it all to come crumbling down.
Safety of Cydia Tweaks
Not All Harmful Tweaks Are Malicious
Recently, a developer released a tweak that raised a lot of concerns. He made a post about it on Reddit, and the community was quick to mention potential issues. This is a perfect example of how a tweak can potentially be unsafe without being malicious. It’s an important distinction to make.
He has no intentions of creating something that will harm other peoples devices. He however, through lack of experience, may end up at least partially responsible for any problems that may arise.
That being said, I often maintain that to be a jailbreaker is to be a perpetual voluntary beta tester. You and only you are responsible for what happens to your device. Nobody is ever going to hold a gun to your head to make you jailbreak your phone.
Tweaks From Default Repositories
The default repositories exist for two primary reasons; they provide a sales channel for developers to distribute their tweaks to users, and the repo owners ensure the safety of tweaks that are hosted.
Most popular tweaks will eventually find themselves on either BigBoss or ModMyi. As far as I know there hasn’t been any malware distributed through these repos to date, if I’m wrong please correct me in the comments.
This still doesn’t include inexperienced tweak developers, but will cover a lot of bases for keeping you out of hot water. If you want to break out of Apples walled garden, but still want the stability they offer, stick to the defaults.
If you’re worried about what you install on your phone, to the point of paranoia, then perhaps jailbreaking isn’t for you. Yes, you have to be a lot more careful about what you put on your device but that doesn’t mean that all security is gone.
Do a little research before installing things from unknown developers and you should stay out of harms way. If you’re ever unsure about a developer or their tweak, make a comment or post in the jailbreak subreddit, someone will fill you in quickly enough.
What has been your experience with malware or questionable tweaks?