2011 seems to be the year of the hacking, with numerous companies becoming the victim of cyber criminals. Many big companies have fallen the victim of this type of crime with what it seems no one immune from it. Recently we gave you the news of a small hacking into one of Apple’s websites, and now we have news of Apple promising to fix a security flaw which was found on its iOS software.
The problems first came to light after German authorities warned of a security flaw, which would allow cyber criminals access to personal information of owners of iDevices. According to an article on The Wall Street Journal by Christopher Lawton, users are at the highest risk when viewing a Portable Document Format file (PDF).
This gives cyber criminals a window to infect the devices with malicious software, thus allowing them to take control of the administrative rights of the device. Once the attackers have achieved this they can read personal information such as online banking details, passwords, emails, calendars, and other delicate information.
They can even intercept phone conversations and the current location of the user. The problem is said to be on a variety of different versions of the iOS software that is used on the iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad devices.
Apple has since released a statement saying it “takes security very seriously”, and know about the issue and are now “developing a fix that will be available to customers in an upcoming software update”. The company has not released a time frame of the patch being made available or if they were aware of the issue prior to the news first breaking.
The German information security agency has said they are not aware of any attacks by cyber criminals on Apple devices, but said that users should avoid opening any PDF files from unknown sources until the patch has been released. They also advised users only surf trusted websites and were talking to Apple about the security flaw.
Last year a similar security flaw was found by the German Federal Office for Information Security, which Apple quickly put right. This news will be some embarrassment to Apple as it took an outside organization to point out a security flaw. But at least they are now aware and working on a fix, but is further prove that the more we rely on technology the more at risk we are from criminals.
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