Your iPhone can be HACKED just by receiving a text – how to stay safe

TEXT TROUBLE Your iPhone can be HACKED just by receiving a text – how to stay safe
Harry Pettit, Senior Digital Technology and Science Reporter

31 Jul 2019, 10:19Updated: 31 Jul 2019, 10:52

SIX iPhone security flaws have been found by Google researchers – and Apple still hasn't fixed one of them.

The holes in Apple's iOS software allow hackers access your phone simply by sending you a malware-ridden iMessage. Apple has now fixed five of them

The find flies in the face of recent suggestions by Apple that it's the company to turn to if you care about privacy and security.

Research was carried out by a team at Project Zero, Google's security research group that tracks down so-called "zero day" vulnerabilities.

These bugs are named as such because whoever's in charge of the software has "zero days" to find a solution.

They're a valuable tool for hackers and are constantly being hoarded by cyber criminals and intelligence agencies, while others attempt to find and fix them.

Of the six flaws found by the team, Apple has now patched five. To protect yourself, simply update to the latest version of iOS.

Four of the six – including the one not yet patched by Apple – allow a hacker to break into your phone by sending you an iMessage filled with malicious code.

All you need to do is open the message and the cyber crook has remote access to your iPhone.

From here, they can copy files like your photos, messages and possibly your bank details – or even crash your phone, wiping everything on it.

Other flaws found by Google allowed hackers to break into your iPad or Mac computer using similar methods.

Details of the five flaws now patched by Apple have been published online by Project Zero.

The sixth vulnerability has been kept a secret in order to stop hackers from using it.

Apple urged users to update their iPhones to iOS 12.4, the latest version of its software, to fix the five patched bugs.

Apple has previously stated that keeping your software up to date is "one of the most important things you can do to maintain your Apple product's security."

As for the sixth flaw, The Sun understands that Apple is currently investigating a fix. There's no word yet on when that might become available.

Apple has made a point over the past 18 months to tout its commitment to user security, with boss Tim Cook declaring in January that privacy is a "fundamental human right".

It has become a key part of Apple's advertising campaigns as tech titans like Facebook and Google find themselves under intense scrutiny for their lapse attitude to user data.

At this year's CES conference, where most of the world's biggest tech firms were in attendance, Apple took a sly dig at its rivals with a huge billboard.

It read: "What happens on your iPhone, stays on your iPhone."

For the most part, Apple has stuck to its guns, but in recent months the firm has been hit by a number of privacy slip ups.

Last week, the firm scrambled to fix a flaw that made it possible to spy on iPhone owners using the Apple Watch's Walkie Talkie app.

Earlier this month, a flaw found by researchers let anyone turn your Apple Mac webcam on remotely and spy on you using the Zoom video chat app.

Zoom eventually fixed the vulnerability with an emergency patch after initially dismissing it as "low risk".

In other iPhone news, we recently revealed how to stop pranksters sending texts from your phone through its lock screen.

A spy firm recently warned of a new £60 hacking tool that can unlock any iPhone or iPad in seconds.

We've put together a list of iPhone tips and tricks to help you get the most out of your mobile.


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