This Apple device update is immediate, experts say

SAN FRANCISCO (NEXSTAR) – Apple disclosed a serious security vulnerability Wednesday for iPhones, iPads and Macs.

A software flaw could potentially allow attackers to take complete control of these devices, Apple said in two security REPORTS.

On Wednesday, Apple installed security updates for iOS 15.6.1 and iPadOS 15.6.1 after investigating two vulnerabilities that could lead to “arbitrary code execution.” The same day Apple also released a security updates for macOS Monterey users.

Apple’s description of the vulnerability means hackers could gain “full admin access to the device” so they can “execute any code as if you, the user,” said Rachel Tobac, CEO of SocialProof Security.

Vulnerabilities were detected in webkit, which is the web browser engine, and the kernel, which is basically the core of the operating system.

On Thursday, Apple also released security updates for macOS Big Sur and macOS Catalina to prevent “maliciously crafted web content” in Safari that could leave devices vulnerable to attacks.

The company said in all cases it was aware of reports that said the issue was “actively exploited.”

Security experts have advised users to update the device in question – iPhones 6S and later models; some iPad models, including the 5th generation and later, all iPad Pro and iPad Air 2 models; and Mac computers running MacOS Monterey. It also affects some iPod models.

“If you use an iOS device, make sure you update as soon as you can,” tweeted cybersecurity researcher Sean Wright.

Journalists, activists, people targeted by nation states and others who may face external threats should update immediately, according to Tobac. Others should also update their devices, he added, at least by the end of the day.

Apple’s description of the vulnerability means hackers could gain “full admin access to the device” so they can “execute any code as if you, the user,” said Rachel Tobac, CEO of SocialProof Security.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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