- Apple performed a “thorough security audit” of its FaceTime service and found a bug related to moving photos.
- A major FaceTime flaw discovered last week gave anyone with FaceTime the ability to listen in on other people’s iPhones.
- Congress is asking questions about when Apple knew about the bug and what it did about it.
- “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,” Apple said in a statement.
The latest software update for iPhones and iPads re-enables Apple’s Group FaceTime service.
The group-video-calling feature was turned off last week after a flaw was discovered that could enable a bad actor to listen in on other people’s iPhones before they pick up the FaceTime call.The software update released on Thursday fixes that.
But that’s not the only flaw that Apple fixed in FaceTime. Apple performed a “thorough security audit” of its FaceTime software, according to the company’s security disclosures, and found an additional problem.
“A thorough security audit of the FaceTime service uncovered an issue with Live Photos,” Apple said in the disclosure. “The issue was addressed with improved validation on the FaceTime server.”
“Today’s software update fixes the security bug in Group FaceTime,” Apple said in a statement to Business Insider. “We again apologise 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.”
It continued: “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.”
The disclosure of the additional FaceTime flaw is notable because last week’s Group FaceTime revelation led to investigations, class-action lawsuits, and a congressional inquiry.
The congressional inquiry from House Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Frank Pallone and Rep. Jan Schakowsky asked several questions directly to Apple CEO Tim Cook.
In the letter, the two Democrats asked if “there are other undisclosed bugs that currently exist and have not been addressed.”
The congress members also asked Cook to “provide a timeline of exactly what steps were taken and when they were taken to address the vulnerability after it was initially identified.”
The fact that Apple conducted a security audit of FaceTime after the original flaw became public may be relevant to how various governments and investigators address the fallout from the Group FaceTime bug.
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