updated 09:00 pm EDT, Wed July 24, 2013
Hacking attack has prompted changes, systems will be rolled out soon
MacNN has received reports that iTunes Connect, a crucial part of Apple's crippled Developer channel, is now online after an unprecedented week of closure following a hacker attack by a security researcher that exposed some data. While the attacker, Ibrahim Balic, has claimed he was just doing "security research," the company shut the system down and said it has been "working around the clock" to overhaul developer systems, update server software and rebuild the entire database to close vulnerabilities. Apple has launched a new "system status" page for the Developer Center.
A modified message also appeared on the site today, continuing to apologize "for the significant inconvenience caused by our developer website downtime." It goes on to say that "while we complete the work to bring our systems back online, we want to share the latest with you."
Apple plans to bring back sections of the developer channel with updated systems in a kind of "soft launch" manner. The company says it will begin with Certificates, Identifiers & Profiles, Apple Developer Forums, pre-release developer libraries and videos. Following this, software downloads with the latest betas of iOS 7, Xcode 5 and OS X Mavericks will return. Then the remaining systems will be brought back, though no specific dates have been given.
To keep developers up to date on the progress, Apple is now offering a status page to display the availability of the developer systems. Late on Wednesday it showed that iTunes Connect, a crucial tool for iOS app developers, was back online alongside Bug Reporting. All other systems remain offline as of 6PM PT (9PM ET). Memberships or apps that were set to expire during the downtime have been automatically extended.