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Apple users: update your devices right now; critical update available

Make sure you grab this latest round of updates pronto.

Screenshot of the settings page to update iphone to the next ios version
Image: KnowTechie

Alright, folks, listen up. If you’re an Apple user, it’s time to sit up and pay attention.

This past Wednesday was not just another hump day; it marked the release of a series of critical security updates from our friends at Cupertino.

So what exactly is in this update? Well, here are two of the most important fixes:

  1. Kernel: This nasty bug could allow bad actors to “execute arbitrary code with kernel privileges,” or in layman’s terms: run code with zero restrictions on your device. That’s like giving someone the keys to your house and saying, “Help yourself to anything.”
  • Impact: 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.
  • Description: An integer overflow was addressed with improved input validation.
  • CVE-2023-32434: Georgy Kucherin (@kucher1n), Leonid Bezvershenko (@bzvr_), and Boris Larin (@oct0xor) of Kaspersky
  1. WebKit: WebKit is essentially what lets webpages display on your Apple devices. A flaw here means bad guys could use harmful web content to mess with your device and, just like the Kernel issue, execute code remotely on your device. Yea, not good.
  • Impact: 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.
  • Description: A type confusion issue was addressed with improved checks.
  • CVE-2023-32439: an anonymous researcher

The most concerning part about all this is that Apple has confirmed both issues have been exploited already – yikes! So if you value your digital privacy (and sanity), get to updating, like, right now.

Ios 16. 5. 1 update
Image: KnowTechie

Who gets these updates?

Now for the million-dollar question: Is my device supported? Chances are, yes.

While some older models may not get all the new shiny features anymore, Apple still throws them a security lifeline now and then.

Here’s a quick rundown:

  • iOS 16.5.1 and iPadOS 16.5.1 for iPhone 8 onwards & iPad Pro (all models) among others
  • iOS 15.7.7 and iPadOS 15.7 for iPhone SE (1st gen) & iPod touch (7th gen)
  • macOS updates for Ventura, Monterey & Big Sur users
  • Safari gets its own patch too
  • watchOS updates cover Series 3 through SE

How do I get these updates?

It’s super easy. If your devices aren’t already giving you the nudge to update, going the manual route is as easy as pie:

  1. For iPhone and iPad users:
    • Go to ‘Settings
    • Tap on ‘General
    • Select ‘Software Update
  2. If you’re using a Mac:
    • Head over to ‘System Settings‘ or ‘System Preferences
    • Click on ‘General
    • Choose ‘Software Update
  3. And for those sporting an Apple Watch:
    • Open the Watch app
    • Navigate to ‘General’

Still need an extra hand, we can walk you through each device’s update. We have some carefully thought-out guides you can follow:

In short: If you’ve got an Apple gadget lying around somewhere – which, let’s face it, most of us do – make sure you grab this latest round of updates pronto.

Have any thoughts on this? Drop us a line below in the comments, or carry the discussion to our Twitter or Facebook.

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Kevin is KnowTechie's founder and executive editor. With over 15 years of blogging experience in the tech industry, Kevin has transformed what was once a passion project into a full-blown tech news publication. Shoot him an email at kevin@knowtechie.com or find him on Mastodon or Post.

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