PSA for all Apple iOS users: You should update your iPhone and iPad devices now.
In a support update issued this week by Apple, the company announced there are new iOS 14.4 and iPadOS 14.4 updates that may protect users against “malicious” exploitation from outside influencers. “A malicious application may be able to elevate privileges,” the update stated. “Apple is aware of a report that this issue may have been actively exploited.” In addition, the update mentions that remote hackers may be able to “cause arbitrary code execution.” The updates, which improve locking and restrictions, come after anonymous researchers uncovered vulnerabilities in the software.
When asked about the update and potential risks of the breach, Johnson & Wales University professor and online instructor Tom Calabrese, Ph.D., said the update addresses very serious security issues.
“These are categorized as zero-day events,” he explained. “The flaw that allows an attacker to elevate privilege is the most serious because it would potentially allow an attacker to gain control of your device.” Calabrese said the privilege issue and another that was identified—which allows remote attackers to “cause arbitrary code execution”—could be potentially devastating to users.
Apple is urging iPhone and iPad users to update their devices to fix security flaws that might have been “actively exploited” by hackers. Apple made the software upgrades available Tuesday, adding a rare note suggesting it was a serious threat. https://t.co/4TFP9LuenS— The Associated Press (@AP) January 27, 2021
Therefore, consumers should complete this update as soon as possible and make a habit of regularly updating their devices. “It is always a good idea to protect yourself by doing updates,” he explained. “In older models of the iPhone, some updates take up significant memory and can cause performance problems but newer devices should have no problem installing the updates smoothly.”
iOS users can easily download the update by accessing “Software Update” under their general iPhone settings.