Apple customers have been warned to update all of their iOS software devices by the company in the last 24 hours. A “one tap” spyware hack was recently discovered after security researchers were alerted to suspicious activity on a United Arab Emirates lawyer’s iPhone.
Ahmed Mansoor, a human rights lawyer and activist, began receiving concerning and threatening texts last month. These alarming exchanges were very unlike the “You’ve won an island vacation, a $500 Gucci gift card, and more as soon as you can get me rescued from the Amazon rainforest “ hack emails of the past. Ahmed was told his secrets would be exposed and in an instant, all concept of his privacy had evaporated. Mansoor, an individual who was hacked before, took aggressive and measured steps to look into the matter.
He relayed the messages to researchers at the University of Toronto’s Citizen Lab. From there, Citizen Lab bridged with a San Francisco based security company named Lookout. Thursday night, Lookout posted their findings from their inquiry into Ahmed Mansoor’s ordeal. The site called the hack a “trident” of iOS vulnerabilities. The post stated: “The attack allows an adversary to silently jailbreak an iOS device and stealthily spy on victims, collecting information from apps including Gmail, Facebook, Skype, WhatsApp, Calendar, FaceTime, Line, Mail.Ru, and others.” The takeover of the electronic devices happens in mere seconds.
The spyware infiltrates iPhones and iPads, makeing things like the cameras, microphones, and personal information remotely accessible. Thursday, Apple released iOS 9.3.5 in response to the vulnerabilities as an attempt to beef up security measures. Be sure to update your iOS equipment with haste to ensure your digital security and privacy.