iOS 15.3.1 closes risky security hole and fixes Braille display bug

iOS 15.3.1 closes risky security hole and fixes Braille display bug

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iOS 15.3.1 closes risky security hole and fixes Braille display bug
Apple seems to think the security hole closed by iOS 15.3.1 is a serious one.
Photo: Lewis Wallace/Cult of Mac

Apple recommends iPhone and iPad users install a system software update released on Thursday. It removes a security hole on all web browsers, and also includes an accessibility fix.

There are also fresh updates for watchOS as well as macOS available.

What changed in iOS 15.3.1

The release notes for the new version say, “iOS 15.3.1 provides important security updates for your iPhone and fixes an issue that may cause Braille displays to stop responding.”

iPad users got their own version: iPadOS 15.3.1. It deals with the same bug.

Also in both versions is a fix for a WebKit security hole that would let a hacker create a web page to run code the user is unaware of, according to Apple. That makes it worth installing even for those who don’t use a Braille display.

Thursday’s updates replace iOS 15.3 and the iPad equivalent, which debuted in late January, primarily to remove bugs. Apple already has iOS 15.4 in beta testing.

watchOS 8.4.2 just squashes bugs

So Apple Watch users don’t feel left out, they can install watchOS 8.4.2. The release notes say, “watchOS 8.4.2 includes security updates and bug fixes for your Apple Watch.”

But Apple also says, “This update has no published CVE entries,” which means it fixes no Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures.

watchOS 8.4.2 replaces a version that came out last week to take care of bugs.

How to install the iOS, iPad OS and watchOS updates

iPhone or iPad users can install iOS 15.3.1 or iPadOS 15.3.1 by connecting the device to a Mac, or to a PC running iTunes. Alternatively, an over-the-air update is also possible. That’s accomplished by opening the Settings app and going to General > Software Update.

The watchOS 8.4.2 update can be installed directly onto an Apple Watch, as long as the wearable is connected to Wi-Fi. From the Settings app just navigate to General > Software Update. Alternatively, it can be installed from an iPhone by opening the Apple Watch app and going to My Watch > General > Software Update.