iOS 14.5 makes zero-click iPhone attacks even more difficult

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If hackers dump your personal data onto the dark web, you need to know about it. Dashlane Dark Web Monitoring can sound the alarm.
“Dammit, Apple keeps breaking all my best zero-click attacks.”
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The next iOS version will make it more difficult for hackers to break into iPhones. Security researchers digging around in Apple’s beta code for iOS 14.5 found that the company began encrypting pointer authentication codes, which will make zero-click attacks far tougher to pull off.

Apple starts shipping out special iPhones to security researchers

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Apple Security program
Apple launched the new program in July.
Photo: Apple

Apple has started shipping out special iPhones to help security researchers discover weaknesses in iOS. Apple announced its new Apple Security Research Device Program in July. However, they have only started rolling out the phones now.

Under the program terms, researchers get these special iPhones for a period of one year. They may extend the loan period. These iPhones are far less locked-down than regular iPhones. That makes it easier to find flaws that could help improve iOS security.

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TikTok continues to dominate the App Store in 2020.
Congress is worried that apps could pose a security weakness.
Photo: Kon Karampelas/Unsplash CC

Apple doesn’t want users covering up their MacBook cameras

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MacBook
Why would you deface your gorgeous MacBook by covering up its FaceTime camera?
Photo: Apple

Mark Zuckerberg introduced large numbers of people to the idea of taping over their MacBook’s camera when, in 2016, he uploaded a photo that revealed a few of his security measures.

But Apple says using camera coverings can hurt MacBooks. In a new support document, Apple notes that covering the MacBook’s built-in FaceTime camera could interfere with the computer’s ambient light sensor, which is located next to the camera. The sensor controls True Tone and the Mac’s automatic brightness feature.

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Need to manage employees' Apple devices? Hexnode offers the tools you need.
Need to remotely manage employee iPhones, Macs and iPads? Hexnode offers the tools you need.
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Apple insists big Mail app security flaws have not been exploited

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Mail app inbox
Nothing to worry about?
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

Apple insisted on Friday that there is no evidence to suggest serious security flaws in its Mail app have been exploited.

The company says the issues do not pose an immediate risk to iPhone and iPad users. Its statement seems to dispute earlier claims from security researchers, who published details of at multiple suspected “attacks” on Wednesday.

How to protect yourself against the iOS Mail attack

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insecure mailbox
Would you put your mail in this mailbox?
Photo: Pineapple L/Unsplash

Right now, you shouldn’t be using the Mail app on your iPhone or iPad. Thanks to a serious exploit, a hacker can take control of your iOS Mail app just by sending you a malicious email.

You don’t need to open that mail for it to do its bad business. In fact, you don’t even have to have the Mail app open for the attack to work. Yesterday, we covered the news of this attack, and you can read all about the consequences. Today we’ll show you how to protect yourself by changing just one setting.

Yes, you can train Face ID to unlock while wearing a mask

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train Face ID with a mask
Face ID will let you train it while wearing a folded mask.
Photo: Xuanwu Lab

Face ID is great, as long as your iPhone can see your face. A mask — like the ones we all should be wearing to slow the coronavirus pandemic — blocks the iPhone’s Face ID sensor from seeing your face. That means you either need to remove the mask (bad) to unlock your iPhone, type in your passcode every time (annoying), or disable the passcode entirely (a terrible idea).

But, according to in-depth research from China’s Tencent Xuanwu Lab, you can train Face ID to work while you’re wearing a mask. It needs some careful setup, but once it’s done, it works reliablly and quickly. You can even wear glasses.