Yesterday, WikiLeaks stunned the world by publishing a cache of 8,761 secret documents detailing dirty tactics that organizations like the CIA leverage in order to hack not just iOS and Android devices, but also computers, routers and televisions. In a statement issued to news outlets like TechCrunch, and subsequently posted to Twitter by BuzzFeed’s John Paczkowski, a company spokesperson confirmed that Apple had already patched many of the fourteen exploits mentioned in the WikiLeaks dump, codenamed “Vault 7”.

Here’s Apple’s statement in full:

Apple is deeply committed to safeguarding our customers’ privacy and security. The technology built into today’s iPhone represents the best data security available to consumers, and we’re constantly working to keep it that way. Our products and software are designed to quickly get security updates into the hands of our customers, with nearly 80 percent of users running the latest version of our operating system.

While our initial analysis indicates that many of the issues leaked today were already patched in the latest iOS, we will continue work to rapidly address any identified vulnerabilities. We always urge customers to download the latest iOS to make sure they have the most recent security updates.

The leak proves what we’ve already known or suspected thus far—that the CIA both buys zero-day exploits to breach iPhones and iPads on the open market as well as develops their own exploits in-house. For the sake of completeness, zero day exploits are commonly unknown to Apple and the security community at large.

While it targets other platforms, including Android, Windows PCs, routers and Samsung Smart TVs, global elites’ love of iPhone has made iOS a prime target of the CIA. Compromised devices are said to be able to track users’ conversations, texts, geolocations and do nefarious things like remotely turn on the camera and microphone.

The leaked documents include a section titled “iOS Triage Process” which details a step-by-step process for breaking into a new version of iOS using tools like Saline, Adderall and Nightvision. According to the documents, Adderall is capable pull IPSW files and kernel cache from devices while NightVision can read kernel memory and get/put files as .tbz archives.

The CIA apparently has a team of more than 5,000 hackers working in its specially formed Mobile Development Branch unit on exploits to infect smartphones and other devices. These documents allegedly originate from the CIA’s Center for Cyber Intelligence.

To protect yourself from attacks, it’s always a good idea to keep your devices up to date. Besides, stay away from shady apps that may contain malware and avoid becoming a CIA target.

Source: TechCrunch

  • Joseph Duffy

    “To protect yourself from attacks, it’s always a good idea to keep your devices up to date.”

    ….says the blog that dedicates a significant portion of its coverage to jailbreaking.

    In b4 some idiot says jailbreaking makes your phone more secure. No, it does not. It literally makes it less secure. It means your phone does not have the latest security updates, and opens the door for the CIA/NSA (or the thousands of hackers around the world) to run unsigned code on your phone.

    This shouldn’t be necessary to say, but if you are a political dissident, or have any rational fear the your government would spy on you personally, you should stay far away from jailbreaking.

    • This is a blog for people who love iDevices, this blog is not a security-blog. People with iDevices have different interests; some people love jailbreaking and some others love security.

      Trying to invalidate their right to publish content for any of their desired audiences is just illogical. A blog that “dedicates a significant portion of its coverage to jailbreaking” can perfectly promote facts like stating that” to protect yourself from attacks, it’s always a good idea to keep your devices up to date”.

      • Joseph Duffy

        I was not “trying to invalidate their right to publish content for any of their desired audiences…” but instead merely pointed out the irony of a blog that promotes jailbreaking (or not updating) while at the same time telling people to update to the latest firmware.

    • Mark S

      “a significant portion”??? Hardly. It’s mainly products on sale stories, and kissing tim cook’s butt with political stories bashing the current administration.

    • -= J$@ =-

      Ok, let’s have a show of hands who has had there jailbroken phone hacked by using unsigned code lately…anyone…

  • nova12

    well, I can’t do anything about it, so I’m not going to stress about it too much. If a team of 5,000 experts want to hack my stuff, I can’t stop them. I don’t have even the remotest ability to stop them from doing it. I literally could not write one line of code, let alone understand how to prevent a government intelligence agency from accessing my stuff.

    my expertise is limited to trying not to get phished, using anti-malware and anti-virus software (which is probably useless against the CIA), and just hoping for the best.

    • Bill

      True on all accounts, and yes, anti-virus is useless against CIA- in fact, every single thing is probably useless against them. I’m sure they get access to tech before anyone and already break it before it hits the shelf.

      But one way to start the process of stopping them is for everyone to continue talking about it. Their powers are unchecked- this is a big problem. The last president to try to stop them was JFK…

    • Bugs Bunnay

      and this, people, is how you bend over and take it in a world filled with tyrants. like what bill said – bring it up to others, it starts with being aware. freedom and liberty is not given.

    • Mark S

      If the CIA does what they used to do (intercepting hi tech equipment like servers and what not and then opening the box as it’s en route to add spyware and hardware directly to it, and then resealing the package) none of us can do anything.

  • GUY

    Of course they’d say that…. Well I have nothing to hide so bring it up bastardized bastardz!

  • Cerberus The Wise

    To keep an iPhone secure, just keep it up to date. To keep a non nexus/pixel android phone secure, power it off and dump it at your nearest landfill.

    • Benedict

      If there were exploits before, there will be new ones also now and in the future. So you can be sure that your iphone has already new vulnerabilities attackers are aware of.
      Androids advantage is that it is open source. A lot of people are able to search for vulnerabilities. iPhone users have to rely on Apple to find those in iOS.
      In conclusion you are not save against attackers – no matter the OS. If you think updates protect you against anything you are just very trustful but not save.

      • Cerberus The Wise

        Updates may not be sure fire, but I’ll be damned if it doesn’t help. The last time a critical security flaw was exposed on iOS, apple patched it within days. Last time a critical security flaw was discovered on android, it took google 2 months, and it never got to a majority of phones. No platform is safe, but some are undeniably more secure than others.

  • n0ahcruz3

    “Stunned the world”? Lol im not stunned im not even surprised

    • Bugs Bunnay

      more like “stunned the liberal, trendy world”

      • WhenYouSeeAWildStreetBat


      • Bugs Bunnay

        oh no! a liberal trendy street bat has hurt me with it’s words! oh what should I do? oh woe is me!

      • WhenYouSeeAWildStreetBat

        You sound hurt af, at least you tried….hold this L cornball. I bet you have literally zero friends except your iPhone

      • Bugs Bunnay

        hold what L? oh the L you’re holding? keep it.

      • WhenYouSeeAWildStreetBat

        At least you tried….take another L

      • Bugs Bunnay

        folks, a trendy liberal for you.

      • WhenYouSeeAWildStreetBat

        U sound hurt af right now

    • mrgerbik

      Ohhh man all the flack us ‘conspiracy whackjobs’ have taken over the years for mentioning alphabet agencies misconducts is sad.

      Whenever a new revelation leaks, all these people either go silent or proudly lie and say “I knew it all along!!”

      I guess you cant blame some… most people just want to live their lives peacefully with the least amount of trouble.
      Having to devote precious mental energies to confront the current state of affairs isn’t a viable option.
      They would rather use that precious energy towards their kids or career, etc.

  • ravinigga

    I don’t have important stuff on my jailbroken device.
    I have only porn if they care 🙂

    • Jay

      They care, and want to watch it lol.

    • George

      They have videos of you jerking it

  • Mark S

    Many? How about all?