Security Experts:

iOS 14 and iPadOS 14 Patch Vulnerabilities, Introduce New Privacy Features

Apple has patched nearly a dozen vulnerabilities and it has introduced new privacy features with the release of iOS 14 and iPadOS 14 this week.

Each of the addressed security flaws impacts a different component of the operating system, namely AppleAVD, Assets, Icons, IDE Device Support, IOSurfaceAccelerator, Keyboard, Model I/O, Phone, Sandbox, Siri, and WebKit.

The issues could result in applications causing a system crash or writing kernel memory, identifying other installed applications, leaking user information, or accessing restricted files; may allow attackers to download malicious content, execute arbitrary code, or view notification contents from the lockscreen; may lead to arbitrary code execution or a cross-site scripting attack; may allow a user to read kernel memory; or could result in the screen lock not engaging after the specified time period.

The iOS 14.0 and iPadOS 14.0 software updates are rolling out to iPhone 6s and later, iPod touch 7th generation, iPad Air 2 and later, and iPad mini 4 and later.

In addition to security patches, the updates deliver various other improvements as well, including new security and privacy features, such as notifications when the camera or microphone are recording, or when data is copied and pasted.

Starting with the new platform iteration, users can deny applications’ access to precise location, and are also informed on applications requesting local network access. Furthermore, they can leverage a new feature that provides a random "private" MAC address when attempting to connect to a Wi-Fi network.

This week, Apple also announced the availability of security patches in watchOS 7.0 (to resolve four vulnerabilities in Keyboard, Phone, Sandbox, and WebKit) and in tvOS 14.0 (which addresses four bugs in Assets, Keyboard, Sandbox, and WebKit).

Safari 14.0 was released this week with fixes for four WebKit bugs that could lead to arbitrary code execution or cross-site scripting attacks, and is available for download for macOS Catalina and macOS Mojave.

Additionally, Apple announced the release of Xcode 12.0, which patches a bug in IDE Device Support that could allow “an attacker in a privileged network position […] to execute arbitrary code on a paired device during a debug session over the network.”

Related: Apple Announces New Privacy Features at WWDC 2020

Related: Apple Offers Hackable iPhones to Security Researchers

Related: Apple Patches Over 40 Vulnerabilities in macOS Catalina

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