On Friday, 2/21/2014, Apple released iOS 7.0.6. On Tuesday, 2/25/2014, Apple released OS X 10.9.2.
More new releases from Apple, what's new, right?
Well these updates are a BIG deal.
There was a security hole in the prior versions of the iOS and OS X software that left Apple devices prone to what's called, "Man in the Middle Attack". This is a big deal considering this type of attack means a malicious interloper could intercept and monitor all of the activity on your device while it is happening. Whether it's Gmail or Facebook or Online Banking, if your device isn't updated with the latest security patch from Apple, you are grossly unprotected from this covert surveillance.
Unfortunately, nobody knows how this security breach happened, but what we do know is that it has been going on since September of 2012. If you're interested in the technical theories, Google's Adam Langley writes about his discoveries regarding this bug in his personal blog.
Now before you shut off your work or home network and hunker down in a bunker somewhere, take a deep breath. Your password-protected home network and (hopefully) secure work network is more secure than you may think. This exploit exists for when your network has been breached or if your network does not have any security at all. Although this attack does call for a level of sophistication and talent it is by no means impossible nor extremely difficult either so our advice is for all users that connect their mobile devices to non-password protected networks, like a coffee shop WiFi, is to stop doing so. If you have been connecting to unprotected WiFi networks regularly in the past then change your passwords to accounts that are in your Apple devices, look for and rectify any type of suspicious activity in your emails such as unapproved password resets for banking accounts. Of course, there are numerous software "holes" that people are finding everyday so don't be misled into thinking that this fix is a cure-all.
If you're on an iOS device or OS X software, do yourself a favor and update your device immediately. Security breaches are serious business and if you'd like to know more or find out how secure your device is, whether you're using iOS or Android, or OS X or Windows, give Method Technologies a call at (844) 4-METHOD (463-8463).