Apple warns to hurry: there are two actively exploited security holes in the iPhone iOS operating system. The patch fixes the vulnerabilities and is already available. iPad, Mac and Apple Watch users should also take action!
- iMessage bug
- Exploit in WebKit
Typically, iOS updates with a three-digit version number rarely make headlines. Most often, these are patches of little interest in content, optimizing the operation of the system in the background or correcting minor errors. In the case of the recently released iOS 16.5.1, the situation is slightly different. As reported by AppleInsider, Apple itself has announced a rather inconspicuous patch and is urging iPhone owners to iron it out with their systems as soon as possible. Reason for the rush: iOS 16.5.1 fixes two serious vulnerabilities that Apple believes attackers may have exploited in the past.
Cross-platform iMessage bug
The first vulnerability affects the short message service iMessage and allows cybercriminals to smuggle malicious code onto their victims’ devices and execute it there with full system access. The security company Kaspersky had already drawn attention to the bug in advance with the official designation CVE-2023-32434. The vulnerability does not only affect iPhone users, the iPad, Mac computers and the Apple Watch also have it on board. Therefore, you should not only install iOS 16.5.1 as soon as possible, but also iPadOS 16.5.1, macOS Ventura 13.4.1 and watchOS 9.5.2 should be snatched up immediately. The patches are dedicated to different things apart from the aforementioned problems, but they all close the aforementioned security gaps on the respective devices.
Another exploit in WebKit
This also applies to a second vulnerability, which also occurs across platforms and which hackers could also have exploited in the past, according to Apple. In this case, the WebKit browser routine is affected. The gap in its system allows attackers to execute malicious code via manipulated websites on the attacked devices – with potentially similarly devastating consequences as with the first bug. If you have activated automatic updates on your iPhone, iPad, Mac or Apple Watch, you basically don’t have to worry about anything else; the latest patches will land on your devices on their own. However, you can also speed things up and actively trigger the update in the system settings. If you have deactivated automatic updates, you should do so in any case.
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