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Security & privacy

Update your iPhone now to patch 2 big vulnerabilities

Apple’s iOS 14.5 launch has been a bit rocky from the start. The much-anticipated iPhone update brought with it some new functions and emojis, but most importantly, it patched several holes in the operating system’s security.

Since the rollout, the operating system has experienced several hiccups. Some users were unable to activate the anti-tracking setting, while others experienced battery issues. Tap or click here for five new ways to customize your iPhone with iOS 14.

The problems don’t seem to have abated, as Apple released the first update to iOS 14.5 for iPhones and iPad this week. If you haven’t updated yet, you should. It patches two huge flaws.

Why you should update now

The iOS 14.5.1 update includes a patch to two vulnerabilities that Apple described as actively being exploited. That means hackers know about the flaws in the operating system and are actively using them.

Made available for iPhone 6 and higher, and all iPad models including the Pro, Air and mini, the update fixes two crucial WebKit issues.

“Processing maliciously crafted web content may lead to arbitrary code execution. Apple is aware of a report that this issue may have been actively exploited,” Apple explains in the security update.

In the first instance, Apple addressed a memory corruption issue with improved state management. In short, a vulnerability was patched where cybercriminals could attack a phone through infected web content.

Hackers would typically steer potential victims to malicious content through phishing emails, text scams, or bogus online advertising. Recently we reported that scams and malware involving Google Alerts are getting worse, and hackers would use the same techniques.

The second WebKit problem the update fixed is “an integer overflow” that was addressed with improved input validation.

How to update your iPhone and iPad

The updates also fixed the issue that some users were having when trying to enable the new App Tracking Transparency setting. After updating, it should no longer be greyed out. You’re looking for iOS 14.5.1 for iPhone and iPadOS 14.5.1 for your iPad.

Here’s how to update both an iPhone and iPad to the latest version:

  • On the home screen, tap Settings
  • Tap General
  • Select Software Update

If a software update is available, tap Download and Install. Once the download is completed, the update will be installed automatically. If it doesn’t, tap on the Install button.

To make sure that you are always on the latest version, go back to the Software Update page in Settings and tap Automatic Updates. On the next page, toggle both buttons next to Download iOS Updates and Install iOS Updates to the right to enable them.

Keep reading

From AirTags to colorful new iMacs, everything Apple just announced

Battery problems after upgrading to iOS 14.5? Here’s how to fix it

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