A recent data dump from WikiLeaks has given Apple a headache that it could probably do without. The revealed information suggested that the CIA runs a dedicated internal department within the Center for Cyber Intelligence section, charged with finding zero-day exploits within Apple’s iOS-powered devices, such as the iPhone and iPad.
Definitely a headache and exposure that Apple could do without, but the Cupertino-based company has responded to the leaks by claiming that the majority of the published exploits have already been patched within the latest public versions of iOS.
Apple has always seemed to show willingness and extreme haste when it comes to patching known vulnerabilities within any of its platforms. Anyone involved in the cat and mouse-game of jailbreaking will be able to attest to the fact that Apple closes holes in its platforms as quick as individuals can find them and make them known.
It’s that dedication and commitment to security which makes iOS one of the most secure mobile platforms in the world. Today’s statement relating to the WikiLeaks dump mirrors that commitment, confirming that “many” of the issues have already been handled, but that the company is continually working to improve and address any outstanding vulnerabilities:
Apple is deeply committed to safeguarding our customers’ privacy and security. The technology built into today’s iPhone represents the best data security available to consumers and we’re constantly working to keep it that way. Our products and software are designed to quickly get security updates into the hands of our customers, with nearly 80 percent of users running the latest version of our operating system.
While our initial analysis indicates that many of the issues leaked today were already patched in the latest iOS, we will continue to work rapidly address any identified vulnerabilities. We always urge customers to download the latest iOS to make sure they have the most recent security updates.
It’s always a great concern for consumers, and for the companies involved, when information about potential vulnerabilities and exploits are published into the public domain. Even more so when that information makes claims suggesting that the CIA has the ability to put surveillance on specific iPhones in order to watch activity, and even control the device when necessary.
With that said, if the opinion and technical expertise of a number of prominent developers is to be believed, then it seems that the published information doesn’t actually contain anything new or particularly impressive or worrisome.
(Source: @kifleswing [Twitter])
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