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Apple has sent an urgent warning to those using its devices – which include iPhones, iPads and MacBooks – after hackers were able to “exploit” a security flaw.
Earlier this week, the tech giant said it was “aware of a report that this issue may have been actively exploited” and urged users to update their device to the latest iOS model. “Keeping your software up to date is one of the most important things you can do to keep your Apple product secure,” Apple said on its security page.
The security flaw can “effectively give attackers full access to devices” and “run any code as if they were you, the user,” Rachel Tobac, CEO of SocialProof Security, said on Twitter.
As for who should be most concerned about the potential risk, Tobac warned that “people who are in the public eye”, such as activists or journalists, should update their device as soon as possible to ensure that they are protected.
“For most people: update software before the end of the day,” she tweeted. “If the threat model is high (journalist, activists, targeted by nation states, etc.): Update now.”
Apple is well known for keeping issues like this to a minimum unless absolutely necessary, and their security page tells users that: “For the protection of our customers, Apple does not disclose, discuss, does not confirm security issues until an investigation has taken place and patches or releases are available.”
In this case, Apple did not reveal in the reports how, where or by whom the security flaws were discovered, citing only an anonymous researcher.
The specific devices that were affected by this security flaw are the iPhone 6S and later models; a number of iPad models (including 5th generation and later as well as all iPad Pro models and iPad Air 2); and Mac computers running macOS Monterey. The flaw also affected some iPod models.