Hackers Target iPhones with New Malicious Software

Hackers Target iPhones with New Malicious Software
6 min read
19 January

Smartphones like the iPhone produced by Apple are only sometimes safe in locked conditions. If a device has an app called Signal, there's a possibility of the phone getting hacked in the near future.

Forbes reports that that's how the forensic team used to hack iPhones in locked conditions. In fact, as reported, the FBI also hacked the iPhone using the same method.

This was revealed based on the statement by the Deputy Director of the Extremism Program at George Washington University, Seamus Hughes, in court that there was a screenshot of the conversation of the alleged 2020 arms trafficker via the Signal application.

Based on the Justice Department documents, in the messages obtained from Signal, the man did not only discuss the arms trade in New York, United States but also discussed the attempted murder.

Also, another catch shows Signal is one of many tools to hack when the iPhone is locked. But partial AFU (after the first unlock) is also a loophole for hacking the iPhone.

AFU itself is a term for smartphones that are opened once after being locked and then not turned off. iPhones in this state are said to be more vulnerable to data theft because the encryption keys are stored in memory.

However, there is no exact information on which series of iPhones can be hacked in the above way. However, it refers to either the iPhone 11 (either Pro or Max) or the second-generation iPhone SE.

There is no definite information on whether the newest iPhone 12 can also be hacked, likewise with the description of which version of iOS needs to be stronger. However, it is estimated that the latest iOS has better security. Apple declined to comment on this matter; they need direct access to iPhone products, which are expensive.

Meanwhile, a spokesperson for Signal advised always to update the device and choose a strong password to lock the iPhone. This can help protect data if the iPhone is lost or stolen.

iPhone Can Be Hacked with Spyware Without Any Click

Human rights non-governmental organization Amnesty International disclosed that Apple's iPhone smartphones could be penetrated and sensitive data can be stolen through software that does not require the phone's owner to click on a link.

Quoted from CNBC International, Amnesty International found that iPhones owned by some lawyers and journalists have been infected with a malware called Pegasus NSO Group.

The spyware can copy the messages you send and receive, harvest your photo archive, and record every incoming and outgoing call from your phone.

The disclosures show that the government using NSO Group software, has managed to hack iPhones to spy on user data using methods Apple didn't know about.

This attack ability is believed to be much more advanced and does not require clicking on any links. Previous versions of spyware needed the user to click on a malicious link in a message. However, despite the accumulated updates, it's now believed that, Yes, an iPhone can be hacked. So, each user is always advised to be careful with their device.

Amnesty International has listed more than 50,000 numbers affected by spying software developed by the NSO Group. There was evidence that Android devices were also targeted by the NSO Group's software but could not check them in the same way as iPhones.

For years, Apple phones have been known to be the safest and even more secure than the Androids. Apple always tries to market itself to be the most secure phone in the market.

Security experts recommend users always update their security software and send reports if something weird happens, which requires device makers to be aware of the bugs attackers are using.

If they are zero-day, as alleged by the NSO Group, it means that Apple has not been able to fix the exploit. Once Apple fixes the exploit, it's no longer zero-day, and users can protect themselves by updating to the latest operating system version.

That means NSO Group's software could stop working or lose its ability to target the latest phones once Apple fixes the exploit - which it started immediately upon learning of the attack, Apple said.

Although this is definitely risky for most users, Apple will always work to defend their safety by constantly developing and adding new protection features for data and devices.

iPhone Privacy Has Become a Major Marketing Strategy

Apple is one of the world's leading technology companies. Apple products are believed by many to have incomparable quality. One of Apple's products that many people love is the iPhone. iPhone is said to be a smartphone with the highest level of security.

If exploited with this vulnerability, hackers can steal emails, photos, and messages or even access your iPhone's camera and microphone. Ian Beer discovered this gap with Apple Wireless Direct Link technology.

This Apple Wireless Direct Link technology uses wifi to make users able to send media files between iPhones via AirDrop.

Fortunately, Ian found no evidence that the loophole had been exploited. Apple was also swift in solving the problem.

Niamh Muldoon, Senior Director of Trust and Security at OneLogin, said. At the same time, the chances of this type of attack are widely used; it serves as a wake-up call to high-value targets and consumers to be more vigilant.

Apple has already released a recommendation for users to always keep up to date with new releases of security updates. This has become an important notice, especially if you have the older version of Apple phones. By doing so, your device could be more protected.

Alex 10.6K
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Comments (1)
  1. Allison Brown

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    2 months ago · 0
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