Apple: Latest alleged CIA hacks of iPhones and Macs are old, fixed

A WikiLeaks document dump Thursday revealed yet more alarming information about the CIA’s alleged hacking — involving Apple’s iPhones and Macs. But Apple says the vulnerabilities the CIA supposedly exploited are old and it has already fixed them.

“Based on our initial analysis, the alleged iPhone vulnerability affected iPhone 3G only and was fixed in 2009 when iPhone 3GS was released,” an Apple spokesman said in an email to SiliconBeat Friday. “Additionally, our preliminary assessment shows the alleged Mac vulnerabilities were previously fixed in all Macs launched after 2013.”

That’s similar to the response of the company when WikiLeaks released other documents alleging CIA hacking of its devices (and those of other companies) earlier this month.

This time around, the documents released by WikiLeaks claimed the CIA had the ability to keep spying on iPhones even after the devices were restored to factory settings and their operating systems were deleted and replaced. The documents also allege the CIA had a program for hacking into Apple’s Mac computers using a USB stick or other device to install malware on them.

Security experts quoted by the Associated Press also think the exploits are moot, with one of them saying newer iPhones are more secure, and that the Mac flaws all appear to be old.

On March 7, WikiLeaks released thousands of documents it said were from the CIA, revealing tools the agency used to infiltrate smartphones, computers, televisions and other electronic devices. After concerns that the document dump opened up the devices to additional security risks, WikiLeaks head Julian Assange said he would contact the makers of the affected devices to share information with them.

Apple said it has not received information from WikiLeaks “that isn’t in the public domain.” In the statement the company sent, it also said: “We have not negotiated with Wikileaks for any information. We have given them instructions to submit any information they wish through our normal process under our standard terms.”

The company added: “We are tireless defenders of our users’ security and privacy, but we do not condone theft or coordinate with those that threaten to harm our users.”


Photo: Apple Mac computers in 2015. In response to reports that the CIA had the ability to hack into iPhones and Macs, Apple says the vulnerabilities the CIA allegedly exploited have been fixed in newer Macs and iPhones.(Courtesy Apple)



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  • The obvious flaws were fixed. But the things that allow advertisers in, for their financial enrichment as well as Apple’s, remain open, especially for the spy agencies. Who writes these nonsense articles? 6th graders?

  • Steve Carr

    NSA, CIA and the FBI are out of control, but that’s the way we are going and it is expected, They use terrorism as an excuse to spy on us. Wake up and smell the coffee, if we don’t have outrage today what will tomorrow bring. Stop the Government from spying on everybody. Use the search engine that does not change its results for political reasons and respects your privacy, just good old fashion results that are not tracked. Lookseek com The world is over as we once new it. Thank god for Wikileaks maybe the information can save us. Have a awesome day