View my O’Reilly Author Profile
“Jonathan Zdziarski is considered, worldwide, to be among the foremost experts in iOS related digital forensics and security. As an iOS security expert in the field, Jonathan’s research into the iPhone has pioneered many modern forensic methodologies used today, and has been validated by the United States’ National Institute of Justice. Jonathan has extensive experience as a forensic scientist and security researcher specializing in reverse engineering, research and development, and penetration testing, and has performed a number of penetration tests and forensic examinations for government agencies, the military, and the private sector. Jonathan frequently consults with law enforcement agencies and military on cases and assists law enforcement agencies internationally with investigations and training. Also an author for O’Reilly Media and NoStarch, Jonathan has written several books related to the iPhone including iPhone Forensics, iPhone SDK Application Development, iPhone Open Application Development, and his latest book, Hacking and Securing iOS Applications.”
I’ve been hacking on things since I was around eight, and have come to develop very strong interests in reverse engineering, forensics, machine learning, and many other geek-worthy projects. My first PC was a TRS-80 with a cassette deck and 128×48 B/W resolution. As a kid, I spent a lot of time bootlegging cheezy games from other TRS-80s at school, but usually forgot about the lead track on the tape, and ended up with mostly worthless cassettes. My first Apple was an Apple ][gs, followed by a PowerBook 180c, with flying toasters and lawnmower men.
Several years went by doing my own research and coming up with my own new ideas, some of which I’ve had the pleasure of teaching or writing about. I began touching government around 2008, when I released a suite of forensics tools for the iPhone, and in December 2009, accepted an engineering position with an FFRDC. Today, I work on the Security Engineering and Architecture team at Apple.
When you’re young, nobody ever tells you when you’re good at things, or at least you don’t take them to heart, and so I never wrote much until much later in life. I was approached several years ago about writing a book covering the inner-clockwork of statistical spam filters like my DSPAM, and decided to give the pen a try. It seemed to turn out alright, and shortly thereafter I became inspired to write again on a more regular basis. One of the things I noticed was that good writers seemed to enjoy writing, whether or not they became famous for it. This philosophy seems to work for just about anything else in life too: if you enjoy it, spend a lot of time doing it, regardless of whether it makes you famous or pays the bills.
Music (noun): brief interruptions between bass solos
The bass guitar entered the scene at around 18, which came about by some cosmic accident when a so-called friend of mine tried to dump his gear on me for some cash. It was a beat up Peavy Foundation, and I spent several months with bleeding fingers figuring out how the stupid thing worked. Eventually started to enjoy it, and have been playing bass for some 20+ years since. While hackers and painters are a more well known combination, hackers and musicians have more fun. They say music is sound that makes sense; I like Vic Wooten’s philosophy that music is a “language”, and like any other language, the most important thing is “having something to say”; having something written on your heart to express in music is an intimate thing, which is one way musicians differ from hackers in some ways, yet share together in others. My musical inspirations have included Abraham Laboriel, Victor Wooten, Bootsy Collins, Marcus Miller, John Patitucci, Tommy Sims, Richard Bona, Felix Pastorius, and Jaco of course. Recommended tracks: Parliament, James Brown, Janis Joplin, Joni Mitchell, Herbie Hancock, Snarky Puppy, and anything with Metropole Orkest playing. On a Sunday, you’re more likely than not to find me playing in a church somewhere.
One thing I am undeniably certain about is my Christian faith. My former interests pale in comparison. I’ve spent years studying the Greek language, theology, and history, so I could read many manuscripts on parchment and see just how we derived theology.
“Who I am” can’t possibly be expressed adequately without sharing my Christian faith, as it’s not only shaped my character but brought a new level of insight into my life.
Leave a Reply
You must be logged in to post a comment.