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iPhones operating iOS 17 might be crashed utilizing a Flipper Zero

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Safety researchers have found that iPhones up to date to iOS 17 are vulnerable to a Bluetooth assault utilizing a Flipper Zero gadget that may crash the telephone. Ars Technica reports that safety researcher Jeroen van der Ham fell sufferer to the exploit on a practice journey final month, along with his telephone displaying a number of pop-up home windows earlier than rebooting.

Van der Ham found that the attacker, one other passenger on the practice, was utilizing a Flipper Zero gadget with customized firmware to ship a mixture of Bluetooth low power (BLE) alerts to close by iPhone handsets operating iOS 17.

The Flipper Zero is a really highly effective gadget that we described because the Swiss Army knife of antennas final 12 months. It’s a small orange and white plastic gadget with a 1.4-inch show that appears prefer it may very well be a toddler’s toy. The Flipper Zero is a multi-tool for hacking, because it talks to sub-1GHz gadgets like {old} storage doorways, RFID gadgets, NFC playing cards, infrared gadgets, and naturally, Bluetooth gadgets.

There are a number of assaults that may be carried out on iPhones from a Flipper Zero

TechCrunch first reported on the Bluetooth pop-up assaults final month. These can also affect iPad gadgets, nevertheless it seems there’s now a particular “iOS 17 Lockup Crash” within the customized Flipper Xtreme firmware that may truly overwhelm an iPhone and crash it. The assault doesn’t have an effect on iPhones which are operating older iOS variations (like iOS 16), so it seems Apple has modified one thing in its newest OS replace to make iPhones vulnerable to this type of assault.

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An analogous assault can be used on Android gadgets and Home windows laptops. BleepingComputer reported final week that the Bluetooth spam assaults can be utilized on Samsung Galaxy telephones to generate a endless quantity of pop-ups. You possibly can defend towards this on Android by disabling the close by share notification, and the assault doesn’t seem to crash Android gadgets.

If in case you have an iPhone operating iOS 17, then the one dependable solution to defend towards the pop-ups and crash assault is by disabling Bluetooth. That’s not sensible for those who use an Apple Watch or Bluetooth headphones repeatedly, however for those who’re in a location the place somebody may use a Flipper Zero, it’s price serious about till Apple is ready to replace iOS 17 to guard towards these assaults. Apple’s newest iOS 17.1 replace hasn’t fixed the issue.

We’ve reached out to Apple to touch upon the Flipper Zero assault, and we’ll replace you if the corporate responds.

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