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Apple Has Released A New Patch For An IPhone Zero-day Bug Exploited By Hackers

Apple on Monday released a new version of its iPhone and iPad operating systems to address a vulnerability that hackers were using in the wild to hijack Apple devices.


On its security update website, Apple said, “Apple is aware of reports that this vulnerability has been actively exploited.” It’s the term Apple uses when someone notifies the firm that it has seen hackers exploiting an issue against real-world targets, such as a vulnerability discovered by a researcher in a controlled setting.


In this instance, Apple attributes the discovery to an anonymous researcher and praises Citizen Lab “for their support.” CitizenLab is a digital rights research group based at the Munk School of the University of Toronto. It is well known for showing misuse of official hacking tools, such as those developed by the NSO Group.


An Apple representative, Scott Radcliffe, told that the firm had nothing to contribute beyond the release notes. Citizen Lab senior researcher Bill Marczak said he and his colleagues had no comment at this time.


This latest flaw was found in WebKit, the browser engine used by Safari and developed by Apple. WebKit has historically been a favorite target for hackers, as it provides access to the rest of the device’s data.


Motherboard reported in 2021 that in just the first four months of that year, Apple had fixed seven exploits, six of which were in WebKit, a number that experts considered high at the time.


Since then, the situation has improved. TechCrunch reports that, as of January 2022, there are nine iOS vulnerabilities that are “actively exploitable,” including four in WebKit. Other vulnerabilities include three in the kernel, a core component of the operating system, one in AppleAVD, the company’s audio and video decoding framework, and one in IOMobileFrameBuffer, a kernel extension.


As usual, the average iPhone user is less likely to be targeted by this zero-day vulnerability, but you should still upgrade your device.

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