As you may have seen or heard, the Apple Developer Portal has been down for over a week now after a reported security breach. This has been causing a significant headaches for the iOS developer community, and the most frustrating part is that there is no timeline for restoration.
On Thursday July 18th, the Apple Developer Portal was abruptly removed from service by Apple leaving only a note that there has been a security breach a couple of days earlier and that they would be shutting the entire portal down until they can rebuild the thing from scratch.
Last Thursday, an intruder attempted to secure personal information of our registered developers from our developer website. Sensitive personal information was encrypted and cannot be accessed, however, we have not been able to rule out the possibility that some developers’ names, mailing addresses, and/or email addresses may have been accessed. In the spirit of transparency, we want to inform you of the issue. We took the site down immediately on Thursday and have been working around the clock since then.
In order to prevent a security threat like this from happening again, we’re completely overhauling our developer systems, updating our server software, and rebuilding our entire database. We apologize for the significant inconvenience that our downtime has caused you and we expect to have the developer website up again soon.
For those of you who are not iOS or Mac developers, the Apple Developer Portal is an area of the developer site which provides access to the XCode developer tools, iOS and Mac OS SDKs, provisioning and certificate management, and more. It’s also a paid area of the site, one in which you must fork over $99/year to use (and is mandatory for publishing apps).
With the portal down, the majority of developers are unable to release new apps or update existing ones. While it’s true that the iTunes Connect portal where app updating and publishing is actually done is still up, much of the setup involved with performing a publish or update are only available using the developer portal.
Additionally, developers who are frantically preparing for the upcoming iOS 7 and Mavericks releases have been left out in the cold. The required tools and SDKs needed to develop for these new OS versions have been made inaccessible as well.
What they haven’t done is provide any type of timeline or rough estimate for when they expect any of the services to be restored. For developers who are working under deadlines, this is a nightmare. Will they be unable to publish an app for another few days? A week? Months? There is simply no way to gauge the outage. There was substantial outcry from the developer community after just 24 hours of downtime - going in to the second week of outage, businesses are beginning to suffer with no relief in sight.
At around 7PM EST on the eighth day of the outage, Apple released the following update.
We appreciate your patience as we work to bring our developer services back online. Certificates, Identifiers & Profiles, software downloads, and other developer services are now available. If you would like to know the availability of a particular system, visit our status page.
If your program membership expired or is set to expire during this downtime, it will be extended and your app will remain on the App Store. If you have any other concerns about your account, please contact us.
Thank you for bearing with us while we bring these important systems back online. We will continue to update you on our progress.
With the Certificates, Identifiers & Profiles section back online, developers should now be able to submit new apps and update existing ones. This announcement should come as a big relief to development shops. Aside from automatic XCode configuration features, all of the major services are now back online.