Apple sues NSO Group to curb the abuse of state-sponsored spyware
Apple also announced a $10 million contribution to support cyber surveillance researchers and advocates
Apple today filed a lawsuit against NSO Group and its parent company to hold it accountable for the surveillance and targeting of Apple users.
The complaint provides new information on how NSO Group infected victims’ devices with its Pegasus spyware. To prevent further abuse and harm to its users, Apple is also seeking a permanent injunction to ban NSO Group from using any Apple software, services, or devices.
NSO Group creates sophisticated, state-sponsored surveillance technology that allows its highly targeted spyware to surveil its victims.
These attacks are only aimed at a very small number of users, and they impact people across multiple platforms, including iOS and Android.
Researchers and journalists have publicly documented the history of this spyware being abused to target journalists, activists, dissidents, academics, and government officials.
“State-sponsored actors like the NSO Group spend millions of dollars on sophisticated surveillance technologies without effective accountability.
That needs to change,” said Craig Federighi, Apple’s senior vice president of Software Engineering.
“Apple devices are the most secure consumer hardware on the market — but private companies developing state-sponsored spyware have become even more dangerous.
While these cybersecurity threats only impact a very small number of our customers, we take any attack on our users very seriously, and we’re constantly working to strengthen the security and privacy protections in iOS to keep all our users safe.”
NSO Group’s FORCED ENTRY Exploit.
Apple’s legal complaint provides new information on NSO Group’s FORCED ENTRY, an exploit for a now-patched vulnerability previously used to break into a victim’s Apple device and install the latest version of NSO Group’s spyware product, Pegasus.
The exploit was originally identified by the Citizen Lab, a research group at the University of Toronto.
Check Apple vs NSO Complaint.
The spyware was used to attack a small number of Apple users worldwide with dangerous malware and spyware. Apple’s lawsuit seeks to ban NSO Group from further harming individuals by using Apple’s products and services. The lawsuit also seeks redress for NSO Group’s flagrant violations of US federal and state law, arising out of its efforts to target and attack Apple and its users.
NSO Group and its clients devote the immense resources and capabilities of nation-states to conduct highly targeted cyberattacks, allowing them to access the microphone, camera, and other sensitive data on Apple and Android devices.
To deliver FORCED ENTRY to Apple devices, attackers created Apple IDs to send malicious data to a victim’s device — allowing NSO Group or its clients to deliver and install Pegasus spyware without a victim’s knowledge.
Though misused to deliver FORCED ENTRY, Apple servers were not hacked or compromised in the attacks.
Apple makes the most secure mobile devices on the market and constantly invests in strengthening privacy and security protections for its users.
For example, researchers have found that other mobile platforms have 15 times more malware infections than iPhone, and a recent study showed that less than 2 percent of mobile malware targets iOS devices.
iOS 15 includes a number of new security protections, including significant upgrades to the BlastDoor security mechanism.
While NSO Group spyware continues to evolve, Apple has not observed any evidence of successful remote attacks against devices running iOS 15 and later versions.
Apple urges all users to update their iPhones and always use the latest software.
“At Apple, we are always working to defend our users against even the most complex cyberattacks. The steps we’re taking today will send a clear message:
In a free society, it is unacceptable to weaponize powerful state-sponsored spyware against those who seek to make the world a better place,” said Ivan Krstić, head of Apple Security Engineering and Architecture.
“Our threat intelligence and engineering teams work around the clock to analyze new threats, rapidly patch vulnerabilities, and develop industry-leading new protections in our software and silicon.
Apple runs one of the most sophisticated security engineering operations in the world, and we will continue to work tirelessly to protect our users from abusive state-sponsored actors like NSO Group.”
Apple’s Continuing Efforts to Protect Its Users.
Apple commends groups like the Citizen Lab and Amnesty Tech for their groundbreaking work to identify cyber-surveillance abuses and help protect victims.
To further strengthen efforts like these, Apple will be contributing $10 million, as well as any damages from the lawsuit, to organizations pursuing cyber-surveillance research and advocacy.
Apple will also support the accomplished researchers at the Citizen Lab with pro-bono technical, threat intelligence, and engineering assistance to aid their independent research mission, and where appropriate, will offer the same assistance to other organizations doing critical work in this space.
“Mercenary spyware firms like NSO Group have facilitated some of the world’s worst human rights abuses and acts of transnational repression while enriching themselves and their investors,” said Ron Deibert, director of the Citizen Lab at the University of Toronto. “I applaud Apple for holding them accountable for their abuses, and hope in doing so Apple will help to bring justice to all who have been victimized by NSO Group’s reckless behavior.”
Apple is notifying the small number of users that it discovered may have been targeted by FORCED ENTRY.
Any time Apple discovers activity consistent with a state-sponsored spyware attack, Apple will notify the affected users in accordance with industry best practices.
Apple believes privacy is a fundamental human right, and security is a constant focus for teams across the company.
For years, Apple has led the industry with new protections to disrupt sophisticated attacks and defend its users, including features such as pointer authentication codes (PAC), BlastDoor, and the Page Protection Layer (PPL). For more information about Apple’s platform security, visit support.apple.com/guide/security/welcome/web.
For more technology tips for your family, check out our other posts.
Apple Announced Self Service Repair program for iPhone.
Genuine Apple parts and tools can now be purchased by US customers
Apple today announced Self Service Repair is now available, providing repair manuals and genuine Apple parts and tools through the Apple Self Service Repair Store. Self Service Repair is available in the US and will expand to additional countries — beginning in Europe — later this year.
The new online store offers more than 200 individual parts and tools, enabling customers who are experienced with the complexities of repairing electronic devices to complete repairs on the iPhone 12 and iPhone 13 lineups and iPhone SE (3rd generation), such as the display, battery, and camera. Later this year the program will also include manuals, parts, and tools to perform repairs on Mac computers with Apple silicon.
To start the Self Service Repair process, a customer will first review the repair manual for the product they want to repair by visiting support.apple.com/self-service-repair. Then, they can visit the Apple Self Service Repair Store and order the necessary parts and tools.
Every genuine Apple part is designed and engineered for each product and goes through extensive testing to ensure the highest quality, safety, and reliability. The parts are the same ones — at the same price — as those available to Apple’s network of authorized repair providers. For certain repairs, customers will receive a credit when returning a replaced part for recycling.
The Apple tools available to customers in the Self Service Repair Store are the same as those used by Apple’s repair network. They are custom-designed to help provide the best repairs for Apple products and are engineered to withstand the rigors of high volume. In these professional repair operations, safety and reliability are the utmost priority. The high-quality tools offered through Self Service Repair include torque drivers, repair trays, displays, battery presses, and more.
Apple will offer tool rental kits for $49 so that customers who do not want to purchase tools for a single repair still have access to these professional repair tools. The weeklong rental kits will ship to customers for free.
Self Service Repair is part of Apple’s efforts to further expand access to repairs. For the vast majority of customers who do not have experience repairing electronic devices, visiting a professional repair provider with certified technicians who use genuine Apple parts is the safest and most reliable way to get a repair.
Over the past three years, Apple has nearly doubled the number of service locations with access to genuine Apple parts, tools, and training, including more than 3,000 Independent Repair Providers. A global network of more than 5,000 Apple Authorized Service Providers supports more than 100,000 active technicians. As a result, in the US, eight out of 10 Apple customers are located within 20 minutes of an authorized service provider.
Also today, Apple published a paper, “Expanding Access to Safe, Reliable, and Secure Service and Repair,” which details Apple’s approach to designing long-lasting products and increasing access to repairs.
FOR STUDENT ACCOMMODATION VISIT…….
A New version of iMovie is available for download
iMovie 3.0 makes it easier than ever for anyone to share their stories with video.
Apple today introduced a new version of iMovie with features that make it easier than ever to create beautifully edited videos on iPhone and iPad.
Storyboards help aspiring content creators and moviemakers learn to edit and improve their video storytelling skills with pre-made templates for popular types of videos shared on social, with colleagues, or with classmates — videos like DIYs, cooking tutorials, product reviews, science experiments, and more.
Storyboards make it easy to get started with flexible shot lists and step-by-step guidance on which clips to capture for each video type.
For those who want to create a video even faster, Magic Movie instantly creates a polished video from the clips and photos a user selects, automatically adding transitions, effects, and music to the edit.
Both new features include a range of styles to help personalize the final look and feel of a video, including titles, filters, transitions, colour palettes, and music, all designed to work together.
“iMovie has empowered millions of people around the world to create and share their stories through video,” said Bob Borchers, Apple’s vice president of Worldwide Product Marketing.
“This latest version of iMovie, featuring Storyboards and Magic Movie, simplifies video creation even further, and we think it will continue to inspire the next wave of video creators to dive in and get started.”
Creators can experiment by applying different video styles that include titles and transitions, as well as options for title layouts, fonts, filters, and colour palettes.
Music tracks dynamically adjust to fit the length of a project, and users can refine each clip with intuitive editing tools like trim, split, clip speed, and clip volume.
Completed Storyboard videos are easily shared from iMovie through Messages, Mail, and across social media platforms.
iMovie availability and required devices.
iMovie 3.0, including the new Storyboards and Magic Movie features, is available today as a free update on the App Store for devices running iOS 15.2 or later and iPadOS 15.2 or later. This means the update is available for iPhone 6s and later.
Should You Buy the iPhone 8 plus in 2022?
Should you buy the iPhone 8 plus in 2022?
Apple is known for the longevity of its devices. The company has made name for itself because of the kind of product they serve the mass with. The unique identity and durability of their products, ranging from software to hardware set them apart from other brands.
So in this article, we look at the pros and cons of the old device, the iPhone 8 plus to decide on the question, Should you buy the iPhone 8 plus in 2022?
iPhone 8 and 8 Plus were released in September 2017 alongside the unique design flagship iPhone x
Apple actually decided to maintain the same old iPhone 6, 6s, and 7 set design. This made the iPhone 8 Plus indistinguishable from the iPhone 6 plus which is a four years ago identical look.
However, the iPhone 8 and 8 plus models were built on a glass front and back with a metal band around the edges of the device.
iPhone 8 Plus had a 5.5-inch screen display with annoying front bezels.
The device does not have a bad display as it featured bright, clear, and quite accurate colours Which are only 1080p and it’s matched as 1920 by 1080 with 401 pixels per inch.
This display measurement can be seen on previous models as well.
let’s talk about biometrics and security.
The device also featured 2nd generation of touch ID. Which is conveniently placed on the front of the phone. It’s fast and it is accurate as always.
The touch ID response is still fast in 2022, thanks to apple’s well-built software configuration.
iPhone 8 plus has a primary wide-angle lens with 12 megapixels and an aperture of f1/1.8 with optical image stabilization.
However, the secondary telephoto lens with 12 megapixels and an
aperture of f2/8 did not feature optical image stabilization.
iPhone 8 Plus is capable of recording video at 4k at 60 frames per second which is quite amazing.
This gives you chance to tone it down to 30 frames per second.
On the front, we have a 7-megapixel camera with an aperture of f-22 which is great for selfies and FaceTime video calls.
iPhone 8 plus will give you a full-day battery experience with a 100% battery life.
The iPhone 8 Plus have wireless charging and it supports fast wired charging which will charge your phone to 50% from 0% in 30 minutes but you can only achieve this if you buy the additional Apple USB- C power adapter the one that comes in the box does not support fast charging.
The iPhone starts with a base storage of 64-gigabyte model and 256-gigabyte model.
summary of iphone 8 plus key features.
- LAUNCH: 2017, September 12. Released 2017, September 22
- Status: Discontinued
- Body: Aluminum 7000 frame, reinforced glass front and rear, IP67 certified for water and dust resistance. Gold, Space Gray, and Silver color options.
- Screen: 5.5″ 16M-color LED-backlit IPS LCD screen of 1080p resolution, 401ppi. True Tone adjustment via four-channel ambient light sensor, wide color gamut, 3D Touch
- water resistant rating: Apple’s iPhone 8 Plus is rated as IP67 water and dust resistant.
- OS: Apple iOS 11
- software support: ios 11 til current
- Chipset: Hexa-core (2 Monsoon + 4 Mistral) 2.09GHz Apple CPU, tri-core Apple GPU, 3GB of RAM, Apple A11 Bionic SoC
- Camera: Dual 12MP camera: wide-angle F/1.8 + telephoto F/2.8, live bokeh effects (including Portrait mode and Portrait Lightning), optical image stabilization, 2x lossless zoom, quad-LED flash with slow sync, phase detection auto focus, wide color capture
- Video recording: [email protected]/30fps, [email protected]/60/120/240fps video recording
- Selfie: 7MP F/2.2 front-facing camera with BSI sensor and HDR mode, [email protected] video
- Storage: 64GB or 256GB of built-in storage
- Connectivity: 4G LTE Cat.12 (600Mbps); Wi-Fi a/b/g/n/ac; Bluetooth 5.0; Lightning port; GPS with A-GPS, GLONASS, GALILEO, QZSS; NFC (Apple Pay and for the first time for NFC tag reading too)
- Battery: 2,691mAh battery, wireless charging (Qi compatible)
- Battery Charging: Fast charging 15W, 50% in 30 mins
- Talk time : Up to 21 h (3G)
- Misc: Stereo speakers, Pressure-sensitive Home key with fingerprint scanner, Taptic Engine
Now the question. Should you buy the iPhone 8 plus in 2022?
The iPhone 8 plus is a good device despite the fact that the old lady won’t match the camera capabilities of the latest iPhone 13 series, which has undergone massive improvement with both internal and external features.
Individual users from the 2014 and 2015 old flagships who are on a tight budget can make such a decision by going for the 2017 flagship. From a general point of view, a daily iPhone user will have enough battery and massive performance from the 2017 iPhone 8 plus on a single charge.
According to our personal experience with 8 plus for two months of continuous usage, we can confidently say it is worth going for the 2017 flagship. Users stand a chance of saving big for better and improve devices in an efficient ios ecosystem.
The iPhone 8 plus will also receive ios software support for additional years.
Here are the latest iPhone prices in Ghana………. current iPhone prices in ghana 2022-6s to 13 pro max