A U.S. Department of Homeland Security agency issued an alert to Apple product users this week due to a security vulnerability for iPhones, iPads, and MacOS devices as Apple announced it was releasing security updates for those flaws.
The threat was substantial enough to draw an alert from the DHS’s Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), which issued a statement on Feb. 14. Apple’s updates include iOS 16.3.1, iPadOS 16.3.1, and macOS’s Ventura 13.2.1, while the firm is rolling out Safari 16.3.1 to older Apple operating systems—including macOS Big Sur and macOS Monterey.
“Apple has released security updates to address vulnerabilities in multiple products. An attacker could exploit these vulnerabilities to take control of an affected device,” said the U.S. Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) in a statement on Feb. 14.
CISA’s bulletin advises users and administrators “to review the Apple security updates page for the following products and apply the necessary updates as soon as possible.”
That includes updates for Safari 16.3.1, iOS 16.3.1 and iPadOS 16.3.1, and macOS 13.2.1, according to the notice. On Apple’s website, the bugfix is being rolled out because “an app may be able to execute arbitrary code with kernel privileges,” and another allows for “processing maliciously crafted web content may lead to arbitrary code execution.
For the second bug, or CVE-2023-23529, Apple said it is “aware of a report that this issue may have been actively exploited.”
Scott Radcliffe, a spokesperson for Apple, told tech website Endgadget that it does not have more details on the exploits that were mentioned in the security updates.
Security research firm Sophos provided more details about the security update on Tuesday, saying that users should update as soon as possible. The security flaws are described as a “zero-day spyware implant bug,” meaning that it was a previously unknown vulnerability that could be actively exploited.
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