Update Your Apple Devices Now to Protect Against Spyware
Yesterday, Apple issued emergency software updates for the iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch, and Mac computers after security researchers uncovered a flaw that allows highly invasive spyware to infect devices without a single click.
Citizen Lab, a cybersecurity watchdog group based at the University of Toronto, found that NSO Group used advanced spyware to infect Apple products. This spyware, called Pegasus, infects Apple devices using an insidious technique called “zero click remote exploit.”
Pegasus is extremely dangerous because it allows malicious actors to access devices without the user’s knowledge and turn on their camera and microphone, and record messages, texts and emails, even those sent through encryption. An article in yesterday’s New York Times notes “the discovery means that more than 1.65 billion Apple products in use worldwide have been vulnerable to NSO's spyware since at least March.”
If you use any Apple devices, please update your software to iOS 14.8, MacOS 11.6 (for Big Sur), Security Update 2021-005 (for MacOS 10.15 Catalina), and WatchOS 7.6.2 as soon as possible.
Apple has said it plans to introduce new security defenses for iMessage, their texting application, in its next iOS 15 software update, expected later this year.