Apple loses Corellium's trial
Apple suffered a defeat against the start-up Corellium in court. Why is? Corellium offers partners access to virtual iPhones through its security software. This should help security researchers to identify weaknesses and, if necessary, support them in closing security gaps and fixing bugs. Apple then sued Corellium for seeing its copyrights violated. But a US court found Corellium right.
The verdict was passed by a federal judge in Florida. Accordingly, Corellium did not violate Apple's copyrights with its software. The company's software allows customers to simulate virtual iPhones on PCs. This enables tests for security purposes without the need for a physical device. In court, the argument that research was being carried out for security reasons was also weighted in the decision. Especially since Corellium does not release its software to random customers, but first checks each partner with regard to their reliability.
Apple had argued in court that Corellium's software could cause damage in the wrong hands. Because security gaps discovered with the tools could then be exploited. Apple also claimed that Corellium would sell its software indiscriminately, which the start-up always denied. The judge also found Apple's arguments to be "dishonest" overall.
Exciting background: In 2018, Apple considered taking over Corellium in order to use its tools for internal purposes. However, no agreement was reached and what followed was Apple's lawsuit. However, the latter was on shaky feet from the start, as the virtual iPhones only contain the most necessary functions that are relevant for security research.
The story is still not completely off the table: Apple is accusing Corellium of violating the Digital Millennium Copyright Act and of having circumvented the company's security mechanisms. A decision has to be made about this. The first judgment was well received by security researchers. It is a victory for the research community. Forbes even named Corellium Cybersecurity Product of the Year.