What better way to strengthen a company's security than to hire someone familiar with bypassing it? That appears to have been Twitter's reasoning for hiring well-known iOS hacker Charlie Miller.
Miller, a mobile security expert who has made a name for himself with hacks of Apple's iPhone, naturally tweeted the news of his new position on Friday. He will join the microblogging site's security team today.
According to a Twitter spokeswoman, Miller's official title will be Software Engineer, but no further details about his duties are available.
Forbes reported that Twitter's interest in Miller has been rumoured since last winter. The gossip is that Miller will be used by the company as a full-time penetration tester looking for and fixing vulnerabilities.
Miller, a former National Security Agency trainee and Accuvant consultant, has what Forbes called "a long list of epic hacks," dating back to 2007, when he compromised the iPhone and later won that year's Pwn2Own hacking competition by infiltrating a Macbook Air in two minutes.
Two years later, he revealed methods that would allow attackers to hijack an iPhone via text message and infect Macbooks with malware via a power adapter, before his Apple developer license was revoked when he successfully snuck an iOS app past the company's safeguards.
Miller has since turned to Google's Android platform, defeating the "Bouncer" programme for detecting malware in the app store, and wirelessly compromising Samsung and Nokia phones.
Twitter is no stranger to hacker-savants. Following the acquisition of Whisper Systems in November 2011, Twitter snagged security researcher Moxie Marlinspike as its new director of product security.
Twitter is protective of the privacy of its users, as evidenced by the company's initial refusal to cooperate with the New York State Supreme Court in turning over information about an Occupy Wall Street protester's tweets. Those tweets, however, have been finally handed over as of today.