Apple's iOS 12.1.4 Update Also Fixes Live Photos Vulnerability, FaceTime Bug Reporter to Receive Bounty and Gift Toward Education

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Following the release of iOS 12.1.4, Apple today issued an apology to customers and said that it had found and fixed the Group FaceTime bug and an additional security vulnerability involving Live Photos in the FaceTime app.


From a statement provided to MacRumors:
Today's software update fixes the security bug in Group FaceTime. We again apologize to our customers and we thank them for their patience. In addition to addressing the bug that was reported, our team conducted a thorough security audit of the FaceTime service and made additional updates to both the FaceTime app and server to improve security. This includes a previously unidentified vulnerability in the Live Photos feature of FaceTime. To protect customers who have not yet upgraded to the latest software, we have updated our servers to block the Live Photos feature of FaceTime for older versions of iOS and macOS."
Going forward, Apple says that the Live Photos feature will not be available in FaceTime on older versions of iOS and macOS. Capturing a Live Photo will require iOS 12.1.4 or the new version of macOS 10.14.3. Apple is also restricting Group FaceTime from devices running earlier versions of iOS.

Apple in a security document released this morning outlines the specific fixes that were implemented in iOS 12.1.4 and the macOS 10.14.3 supplemental update.

Apple fixed a logic issue that existed in the handling of Group FaceTime calls with improved state management, and the Group FaceTime testing led to the discovery of the Live Photos issue. Apple says that the Live Photos bug was fixed with "improved validation on the FaceTime server."

Additional Foundation and IOKit bugs were fixed in iOS as well, addressing memory corruption issues that could lead to elevated privileges for applications.

Apple lists Grant Thompson of Catalina Foothills High School as one of the people who discovered the FaceTime bug. Thompson and his mother made multiple attempts to get into contact with Apple to inform the company of the bug well ahead of when it went public. Daven Morris of Arlington, TX is also listed as a person who discovered the vulnerability and reported it to Apple.

Apple has apologized for missing those messages and has vowed to improve its bug reporting system to make sure future bug reports are distributed to the right people. Apple will be compensating the Thompson family for finding and reporting the bug, and Apple will be providing an additional scholarship to be put towards Thompson's education.

Article Link: Apple's iOS 12.1.4 Update Also Fixes Live Photos Vulnerability, FaceTime Bug Reporter to Receive Bounty and Gift Toward Education
 

motm95

macrumors 6502
Aug 19, 2010
268
951
127.0.0.1
As much as I get annoyed at Apple these days for various things, and even though it is extremely concerning that Apple let a bug this serious slip through in the first place, I have to say overall Apple is pretty darn responsive at addressing security problems and releasing updates. I am also very glad that iPhone users don't have to rely on wireless carriers to get these security fixes.
 

CWallace

macrumors 604
Aug 17, 2007
7,385
3,558
Seattle, WA
Sounds good. But I hope it's not just a reactive bounty, but they're also looking at bounty programmes going forward.
Apple has an established "bug bounty" program for iOS, but not macOS. That might be changing, however, based on the macOS Keychain vulnerability that the founder had stated he would not share with Apple due to the lack of such a bounty program.
 

asiga

macrumors 6502a
Nov 4, 2012
850
1,058
...
and Apple will be providing an additional scholarship to be put towards Thompson's education.​
...oh no, they didn’t clear the Beats stock yet... I guess this means another year with eBay plenty of sealed brand new Beats headphones...
 

waquzy

macrumors 6502a
Sep 9, 2013
991
1,115
Leicestershire, UK
Hope the kid gets paid well for identifying this bug. Love Apple for the fast response and security update to all phones. Something Samsung are not very good at on my Note 9. Wait for ever to get any type of software push. Its painful to be honest.
That's why Samsung's phones will never match the harmony of the iPhone, the only phone that can do that would be the Pixel, as Google develops both the hardware and software, same as Apple. Therefor fast day 1 updates are guaranteed, unlike with Samsung, it will never be the case... unless Samsung comes up with its own software
 

jtara

macrumors 68000
Mar 23, 2009
1,957
509
If this young man decides to go into security he could get into some very lucrative work in short order
There's no great white-hat hacking or technical knowledge at play here. The kid was observant, and realized it wasn't right. (Not to denigrate any technical expertise or talent that he does have - I have no knowledge.)

I’d love to get paid for accidentally calling myself over Group FaceTime
He did more than just accidentally called himself over group Facetime. He followed-through and persisted when adults basically told him "go away, kid, ya bother me!"

That persistence is a great trait, no matter WHAT profession he chooses.
 

killawat

macrumors 65816
Sep 11, 2014
1,454
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There's no great white-hat hacking or technical knowledge at play here. The kid was observant, and realized it wasn't right. (Not to denigrate any technical expertise or talent that he does have - I have no knowledge.)
Yep, that’s exactly why he won’t have any problem finding work in the future. While 1337 hackers are in the weeds spending months looking for those juicy kernel exploits, vulnerabilities like this hide in plain sight. If it were a CVE it would be Probably an 8 to a 10 (highest). Why? It’s dead simple to pull off. Don’t focus solely on the technical aspect. Look at the impact as well.
 
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WatchFromAfar

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Jan 26, 2017
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That's why Samsung's phones will never match the harmony of the iPhone, the only phone that can do that would be the Pixel, as Google develops both the hardware and software, same as Apple. Therefor fast day 1 updates are guaranteed, unlike with Samsung, it will never be the case... unless Samsung comes up with its own software
I'm sorry, but how on earth was the group FaceTime bug a "fast day 1 update"? It took them a week to acknowledge it and it was in the wild for three months.
 
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Berti10

macrumors regular
Jan 24, 2012
155
281
Yey... and what about the Bug, that iCloud Photo Library DELETES MY PHOTOS, that I reported in Oktober 2017!! :mad::mad::mad::mad::mad::mad::mad::mad::mad::mad::mad:

If you are interested: This Bug occurred ever since I have my iPhone 8 Plus. When I edit a Photo in VSCO or Instagram and save the edited file to my Library, iCloud thinks its a duplicate and deletes it. Portrait Mode Photos are not affected and Photos from SLR are no problem as well. Even if I edit them on my iPad and try to save them. I don't know what's going on and Apple does no respond! :mad::mad::mad:
 

alpi123

macrumors 65816
Jun 18, 2014
1,276
1,305
$50 gift card for them i bet and a 10% discount on a new Mac pro.
Nah, actually the minimum reward he can get was said to be $25,000 all the way up to $100,000? Idk, something along those lines. It's certainly a huge amount.
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I'm sorry, but how on earth was the group FaceTime bug a "fast day 1 update"? It took them a week to acknowledge it and it was in the wild for three months.
As said, he meant updates in general. Samsung for example, whenever a new Android version comes up, they have to modify it for their phones which takes months.
 
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pat500000

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Jun 3, 2015
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Had to throw money at people, right apple? You’re paying them with cash or check, right? Not itune gift card, right?
 
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