Apple says iOS is vulnerable to Meltdown and Spectre issues

Apple said all Mac computers and iOS devices, including iPhones and iPads, are affected by chip security flaws unearthed this week, but the company stressed there are no known exploits impacting users. Thus, the company will release updates to Safari on iOS and macOS "in the coming days".

Apple this evening has officially released a statement on the Meltdown and Spectre bugs affecting ARM and Intel processors.

"We continue to develop and test further mitigations for these issues and will release them in upcoming updates of iOS, macOS, tvOS, and watchOS", Apple said.

The tech giant said it is working on software updates to fix a pair of vulnerabilities which affect Apple gadgets as well as "all modern processors and affect almost all computing devices and operating systems".

The company has also issued updates on iOS, MacOS, tvOS to protect customers against these flaws. Ben Johnson, co-founder and chief strategist for cyber security firm Carbon Black, said the delay in updating customers about whether Apple's devices are at risk could affect Apple's drive to get more business customers to adopt its hardware. "Analysis of these techniques revealed that while they are extremely hard to exploit, even by an app running locally on a Mac or iOS device, they can be potentially exploited in JavaScript running in a web browser", Apple said. Spectre covers two different exploits and allows applications to read each other's memory.


Other major companies rolling out fixes include Microsoft, Amazon and Google.

Meltdown concerns laptops, desktop computers and internet servers that have Intel chips, and allows a rogue programme to access the memory and other secrets of programs and the operating system contained in the CPU.

Apple also announced that it will be releasing patches for Spectre in the form of an update to web browser Safari in a few days.

IDC estimated that there are 1.5bn PCs in use around the world today, out of which 90pc are powered by Intel processors.

Researchers at Google's Project Zero and academic institutions and discovered the issues past year and disclosed them this week. But someone, somewhere, blew the lid and tech giants are scrambling because the fear is that now the secret is out in the open, hackers could move fast to exploit these weaknesses.


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