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PSA: Update your Apple devices now to fix an iMessage spyware vulnerability

By Kenny Yeo - on 24 Jun 2023, 11:53am

PSA: Update your Apple devices now to fix an iMessage spyware vulnerability

Note: This article was first published on 22 June 2023.

Update your Apple devices now. Apple said it had fixed two newly-discovered security flaws in its iPhones and iPads.

The flaws were discovered by researchers from Kaspersky Lab, who said the attack works by sending out an "invisible iMessage with a malicious attachment." 

It said:

The implant, which we dubbed TriangleDB, is deployed after the attackers obtain root privileges on the target iOS device by exploiting a kernel vulnerability. It is deployed in memory, meaning that all traces of the implant are lost when the device gets rebooted. 

The malware has been dubbed TriangleDB, and by taking advantage of some vulnerabilities in the OS, the malware would install itself and run on the phone. If it's any consolation, the malware runs in memory which means it goes away whenever you reboot your device. The malware can also be thwarted by going to the iPhones' Lockdown Mode.

That said, the malware is said to be capable of running 24 commands. This includes:

  • Copying, editing, and deleting files
  • Monitoring a user's location
  • Stealing login and password information from iCloud Keychain

And upon further investigation, Kaspersky said the malware could possibly be used to target Macs too. 

According to the Federal Security Service of Russia, the flaw has reportedly been used to hack thousands of devices in Russia. It also accused Apple of working with the US government of providing the NSA with a backdoor to infect Russian phones.

Apple categorically denied and said:

We have never worked with any government to insert a backdoor into any Apple product and never will.

At any rate, be sure to update all your Apple devices today.

Source: The Washington Post, Kaspersky

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