APPLE has warned that hackers could break into people’s iPhones using a vulnerability in iOS.
The American tech titan said on Monday it was aware of reports that scammers were “actively exploiting” the bug in its iOS operating system.
Apple released an emergency iPhone update to fix the critical flaw along with other vulnerabilities.
It started rolling out the patched version of iOS this week to protect people from potential cyberattacks.
A total of 11 vital security patches have been released with the iOS 15.7 update, according to an alert on Apple’s website.
One of them, identified as CVE-2022-32917, can be used to allow malicious apps to take control of a victim’s device.
According to Apple, the bug could allow an app to execute “arbitrary code”, a technique used by hackers to perform questionable tasks on a phone.
“Apple is aware of a report that this issue may have been actively exploited,” the company said.
The company said it fixed the flaw and released updates for iPhone 6 and later, as well as a number of iPad models.
Mac users have also been advised to update their devices as macOS Monterey 12.6 and macOS Big Sur 11.7 have also been patched.
The software can apparently be exploited using the same vulnerability, leaving Macbooks and Mac PCs exposed.
Most iPhone vulnerabilities are researched by outside experts and anonymous researchers.
The reason Apple lists them so often is that they are kept secret until a fix is found.
This prevents cyber crooks from taking advantage as Apple rolls out an update before the vulnerability becomes more widely known.
“For the protection of our customers, Apple does not disclose, discuss, or confirm security issues until an investigation has taken place and patches or releases are available,” Apple said.
The update should roll out automatically to iPhone owners, but you can force-download and install it right away.
You can do this by going to Settingsfollowed by Aboutthen Software update.
What makes it particularly unusual, however, is that it dropped on the same day as iOS 16.
This is the latest major update to the iPhone operating system which brings a redesign of the lock screen and new features.
The software bump began rolling out to iPhones around the world on Monday. It’s extremely rare for Apple to release two in one day.
This probably means that the security issues fixed with iOS 15.7 must be quite serious and should be fixed immediately.
It is assumed that these issues are also resolved if you install iOS 16, which you can download by following the instructions above.
Can I get iOS 16?
Millions of iPhone owners will be able to install the latest updates, but not everyone.
If you are using a very old model, you may be cut off from iOS updates.
This puts you at significant risk of hacking attacks, so it’s worth considering upgrading as soon as possible.
For example, when the iOS 16 update arrives in September, the iPhone 6S, iPhone 7, and 1st generation iPhone SE will be cut by Apple.
These handsets were compatible with the current iOS 15.6.1, but won’t get iOS 16.
If you’re using iPhones older than that, you’re already cut off, so you should upgrade to a newer model immediately.
Here is the complete list of devices compatible with iOS 16:
- iPhone 13
- iPhone 13 mini
- iPhone 13 Pro
- iPhone 13 Pro Max
- iPhone 12
- iPhone 12 mini
- iPhone 12 Pro
- iPhone 12 Pro Max
- iPhone 11
- iPhone 11 Pro
- iPhone 11 Pro Max
- iPhone Xs
- iPhone XS Max
- iPhone XR
- iPhone X
- iPhone 8
- iPhone 8Plus
- iPhone SE (2nd generation or later)
Not all iPhones on this list will receive iOS 16.
If you’re using an older iPhone, you’ll just need to upgrade your handset to a newer device to access iOS 16.
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