The community of leakers around Apple has been proliferating for some time. We have seen an escalation in the number of people who appear to be disclosing private information and also as more and more information leaks out faster. What this community shouldn’t have assumed is that apparently there was a mole among them.

The dark world of leaks

According to Vice, leaker Andrey Shumeyko, known as YRH04E on Twitter, acted as a double agent and provided key information to Apple in order to avoid leaks. A task he has developed since his first contact with Apple’s global security team in 2017.

At the time, Shumeyko alerted the team to a phishing attack targeting Apple Store employees. Later, in mid-2020, he collaborated with Apple to investigate one of the worst leaks: that of iOS 14. A leak from which a lot of information was extracted and well before the official announcements of June and d ‘fall.

According to the report, Shumeyko was able to provide the name of the person who allegedly purchased the prototype of a stolen iPhone 11 that contained an early development version of iOS 14. He was also able to provide information on the researchers who had received copies. construction and about several people in China buying and selling stolen prototypes.

According to the same company, these leaks “harm the interests of customers and Apple”.

On another occasion, the leaker reportedly informed Apple of an employee who attempted to sell an account with access to Apple’s private intranet. An account that would give way to corporate emails and other internal corporate documents. Shumeyko claims he kept in touch with the employee until he found out at some point that he had been fired.

According to him, Shumeyko’s main motivation with this cooperation with Apple was to redeem himself for leaking information in the past. Regardless, he expected to receive financial compensation for his work, which never happened since Apple does not pay for this information, and this supposedly led him to sell inside information to 9to5Mac.

The leak manager reportedly apologized to Apple’s security team almost immediately afterwards, who reportedly responded that it was best to check with the team before posting anything else.

“Please understand that our goal is to protect Apple. All of our actions are guided by the principle of what is best for the company, our employees and our customers (of which you are a part). Therefore, your help – and their knowledge – understanding the possible threats that affect us is very important, ”Apple’s global security team said in an email. “My personal advice is to keep doing the right things so that you can build a positive image of yourself. Do the right things to protect Apple. Keep it up, you’ll be proud of yourself, and us too.”

Over the past few months, we’ve seen how Apple is gradually taking action on the issue of leaks. As the same company acknowledges, “they harm the interests of customers and Apple.” On the one hand, we will always want to know more for the better, without ever having to break the law, on the other hand, being able to sit in front of a Keynote ready to be surprised with each announcement is just great.

Image | Kajetan Sumila