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mobile-securityJailbreaking is the process of stripping a mobile device of certain programmed limitations in order to do things like buy, install and run third-party applications that haven’t been approved or even increase the phone’s processing speed.

Jailbreaking was first used in regard to the Apple iPhone shortly after its release in 2007, Rooting is a term used in reference to the Android operating system to describe a similar process. In both jailbreaking and rooting, you take administrative control over the operating system.

Jailbreaking can open users to serious risk. Here are reasons why you should avoid jailbreaking your mobile devices.

Lack of security.
In order to jailbreak a phone, the user must disable the security that is associated with the operating system’s software and introduce a new system. Users who use jailbroken devices leave themselves much more open to cyber attack.

It is like buying the most sophisticated alarm system to your house, and then choosing to open all the doors and windows afterward, It exposes things that wouldn’t normally be exposed.

The risks are even worse for those who seek to buy pre-jailbroken phones. Someone can jailbreak a phone and install [software] that would secretly grab all your keystrokes, monitor all your network activity, resend all your SMS’s back to him.

Malicious apps.
After you jailbreak your phone, applications have greater access to data on your phone than they would at factory settings, asking your permission before it lets an app use your location, for instance — are eliminated during the jailbreak, leaving users more vulnerable to malicious applications.

Disabling your device completely.
If you do something wrong during your jailbreak, you may completely “brick” your device, essentially killing the device and rendering it as useful as a paperweight. Bricking has become less common as jailbreaking tools have become more sophisticated, but it’s still a risk. If you do decide to jailbreak, back up your phone entirely before you begin.

The bigger problem is that jailbreaking instantly voids your warranty. If anything ever goes wrong, you’re out of luck. Think twice before you consider jailbreaking or rooting your device.

Information from Entrepreneur.com and Techrepublic.com was used in this article.