Apple has now published a white paper detailing the risks of sideloading apps on the iPhone. It comes amid the ongoing antitrust related problems the company faces; the US House Judiciary Committee is set to debate legislation.
The iPhone maker is also caught up in a lawsuit with Epic Games. The game maker alleges that Apple’s model for the distribution of apps on iOS is not fair. It adds that the App Store charges developers unfairly with the fee.
Epic Games also believes that developers should be allowed to use their own purchasing methods without having to go through Apple. It adds that the iPhone should be allowed to have more app stores apart from just Apple’s offering.
Allowing sideloading would degrade the security of the iOS platform and expose users to serious security risks not only on third-party app stores, but also on the App Store. Because of the large size of the iPhone user base and the sensitive data stored on their phones—photos, location data, health and financial information—allowing sideloading would spur a flood of new investment into attacks on the platform. Malicious actors would take advantage of the opportunity by devoting more resources to develop sophisticated attacks targeting iOS users, thereby expanding the set of weaponized exploits and attacks—often referred to as a “threat model”—that all users need to be safeguarded against. This increased risk of malware attacks puts all users at greater risk, even those who only download apps from the App Store. Additionally, even users who prefer to only download apps from the App Store could be forced to download an app they need for work or for school from third-party stores if it is not made available on the App Store. Or they could be tricked into downloading apps from third-party app stores masquerading as the App Store.Apple’s white paper