Following TechCrunch’s Scoop About Facebook’s Research App, Apple Has Revoked Facebook’s Enterprise Certificate

Tom Warren and Jacob Kastrenakes, the Verge:

Apple has shut down Facebook’s ability to distribute internal iOS apps, from early releases of the Facebook app to basic tools like a lunch menu. A person familiar with the situation tells The Verge that early versions of Facebook, Instagram, Messenger, and other pre-release “dogfood” (beta) apps have stopped working, as have other employee apps, like one for transportation. Facebook is treating this as a critical problem internally, we’re told, as the affected apps simply don’t launch on employees’ phones anymore.

The shutdown comes in response to news that Facebook has been using Apple’s program for internal app distribution to track teenage customers with a “research” app.

This is almost a better response than if Apple pulled Facebook’s apps from the App Store. It doesn’t impact typical users at all, but it sounds like it’s causing chaos within the company. And Facebook got themselves into this mess because their internal apps use the same enterprise certificate as their creepy VPN app. Hilarious.

Update: Facebook did the PR rounds this morning explaining that it was shutting down its iOS research program, but Josh Constine of TechCrunch reports that Apple invalidated the enterprise certificate before Facebook started making those claims.