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Comex: Scrumper turned Gamekeeper

So can I resist the temptation to blog about the departure of Steve Jobs? Well, yes, though I wish Jobs, his successor, and the company well. But I'm not really qualified to add to the flurry of business analysis that has preoccupied the media since the announcement. However, if you're interested in that aspect, Richi Jennings has done his usual sterling work on aggregating useful articles on the topic for Computer Weekly.

Perhaps it's more in keeping with this blog that Nick Allegra has apparently found the internship he was looking for. Allegra, better known perhaps as @Comex, is somewhat celebrated for his creation JailBreakMe, which enables adventurous iGadget users to evade Apple's restrictions on what apps they can install. So it's kind of surprising to see which company actually came through for him. Since Apple has made forceful efforts to discourage jailbreaking, I guess it's taken heed of the old saw about "keeping your friends close and your enemies closer." Or maybe they had in mind another saw about the devil finding work for idle hands.
 
In any case, it will be interesting to see what comes out of this relationship, if anything. Hiring poachers as gamekeepers doesn't usually work out too well in the AV industry, but then Apple is – despite its dabbling with rudimentary malware detection in Snow Leopard and Lion – not in that space. Which isn't to deny the fact that Apple actually has some pretty darn good security people, by the way. And Allegra isn't a malware author, of course, even though jailbreaking has opened the door to malware in some instances
 
Be that as it may, a guy of whom Charlie Miller has said "He's totally blown me away" clearly has talent in the vulnerability research field. If Apple can make constructive use of that talent, that could be very positive for its customers.

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