Hackers 'attacked thousands of iPhone users a week'

Published on: 9 Sep 2019

Researchers at the external Google security team Project Zero have revealed the details of a hacking attack that targeted thousands of iPhone users per week.

The operation lasted more than two years and used a small number of hacked websites. Once people visited these compromised sites, malware was delivered to their iPhones and their security was breached.

Malicious individuals could then access their device's keychain, their passwords, chat histories, address book and email database.

It is not clear how many users were affected, but Google said it reported the issue to Apple in February and the organisation swiftly released a new security update to fix the problem.

Ian Beer of Project Zero said in a blog post: "All that users can do is be conscious of the fact that mass exploitation still exists and behave accordingly; treating their mobile devices as both integral to their modern lives, yet also as devices which can upload their every action into a database to potentially be used against them."

He added that the research is not an indication of iPhones being less safe than Android devices, with the latter described as equally vulnerable to hacking attacks.

Indeed, Check Point Research discovered a new type of advanced phishing attack this week targeting Android phones, which tricks users into installing malicious settings disguised as network updates on their devices.