Apple has had to quickly update its software for an iphone vulnerability that some independent researchers say has created a critical vulnerability. Researchers from the University of Toronto’s Citizen Lab said the software exploit has been in use since February and has been used to deploy Pegasus, the spyware made by Israeli firm NSO Group that has allegedly been used to surveil journalists and human rights advocates in multiple countries. It has also been exploited by notorious surveillance software to spy on a Saudi activist.
On Monday, an urgent update was released that plugs a hole in the iMessage software that allowed hackers to infiltrate a user’s phone without the user clicking on any links. Apple credited the Citizen Lab researchers for finding the vulnerability.
“Attacks like the ones described are highly sophisticated, cost millions of dollars to develop, often have a short shelf life, and are used to target specific individuals,” Ivan Krstić, head of Apple Security Engineering and Architecture, said in a statement. Apple rapidly addressed the issue with a software fix and the vulnerability is “not a threat to the overwhelming majority of our iphone users.”
Update Your iPhone
To make sure you are safe, security experts encourage users to update their mobile devices to make sure they have protection.