Millions of users installed iOS fleeceware from official App Store
Security analysts are reporting a growth in fleeceware apps promoted on Apple’s App Store as free ones but eventually overcharging users for junk services. Fleeceware is a researchers-coined term denoting applications that follow questionable marketing practices and exhibit the following characteristics: they provide paid features that are available at zero or lower cost in other apps; and they may also pretend to be completely free but end up charging people after a short trial period expires.
Apple is the most mimicked brand in phishing scams
According to recent findings of security analysts, Apple customers are in the epicenter of brand-based phishing attacks in Q1 2020. If you own a Mac computer or an iOS device, numerous perks are at your fingertips. The only major caveat is that you are more likely to encounter brand-related phishing hoaxes compared to customers of any other popular technology company. In case you find this statement far-fetched, the Q1 2020 Brand Phishing Report by Check Point cybersecurity firm will prove you wrong.
No chance for snoops: new iPad Pro disables the microphone when not in use
iPad models released in 2020 come with a hardware microphone disconnect feature that prevents eavesdropping when the device’s case is closed. Apple previously equipped their recent MacBook models with a security feature that intelligently switches off the microphone when the lid is closed. Now it’s turn for iPad devices to get a similar functionality off the shelf. The extra protection against snooping starts to go live in the 2020 iPad Pro. Instead of closing the lid, which is obviously not the case with the mobile devices in question, the mic cut-off feature is triggered when the user closes the case.
Apple paid white hat hacker $75,000 for unearthing zero-days
A bug bounty program is an amazingly effective way for software makers and device manufacturers to explore weaknesses in what they create. Apple joined the club in December 2019 by encouraging everyone, not only invited researchers, to put their products to the test. The first results of this move have been quick to arrive as a security analyst found a way to exploit Safari vulnerabilities and access the camera on iOS and macOS devices.
Safari privacy update: a game-changing step forward
The recent update of Apple’s proprietary web browser proved out to be more revolutionary than it may appear. Having surfaced in late March 2020, Safari 13.1 comes with a host of new features and, perhaps most importantly, a fundamental privacy tweak. The latter comes down to enhancements of the built-in mechanisms intended to prevent third-party tracking. Go ahead and familiarize yourself with these commendable improvements.
COVID-19 scam emails to beware of
The coronavirus pandemic is underway and a glimmer of light has yet to appear at the end of the tunnel. Having found themselves locked up in their homes as part of disease prevention, people around the world are being growingly targeted by online scams. Black hats are ramping up their efforts to execute COVID-19 themed phishing attacks aimed at stealing sensitive credentials or defrauding individuals and organizations of money.