HomeWinBuzzer NewsApple iOS Vulnerability Exposed by Kaspersky Points to iPhone Weakness

Apple iOS Vulnerability Exposed by Kaspersky Points to iPhone Weakness

Kaspersky researchers discovered a critical hardware vulnerability in iPhones, impacting devices up to iOS 16.6.


's Global Research and Analysis Team has revealed an unidentified hardware-based vulnerability within iPhones that have impacted devices running iOS versions up to 16.6. Addressing this issue through CVE-2023-38606, patched the flaw in July 2023, marking a critical step in maintaining device security for users. It appears the hardware function in question might have been aimed for internal testing or debugging purposes.

Investigative Challenges

The cyber forensic investigation into the vulnerability posed significant obstacles. With no accessible public documentation regarding the obscure hardware feature, analysts initially struggled to detect and scrutinize the attack route. Kaspersky experts had to employ reverse-engineering techniques on the 's device hardware, firmware, and kernel images to trace the source and impact of the vulnerability. The targeted Memory-Mapped IO (MMIO) addresses, which facilitate CPU-device communication, became a focal point since attackers exploited unfamiliar MMIO addresses to circumvent the hardware-based kernel protection.

Implications of the Vulnerability

Boris Larin, Principal Security Researcher with Kaspersky's Global Research and Analysis Team, commented on the complexity of the detection process, highlighting the nuanced understanding required of the intricate hardware and software structures. The vulnerability in question played a pivotal part in an assault dubbed “Operation Triangulation,” where malicious actors infiltrated targeted to install spyware and capture user information.

Kaspersky promptly informed Apple upon discovering the exploit of the hardware feature, leading to a swift response from the tech giant to mitigate the issue. As Larin notes, the presence of undocumented hardware components capable of bypassing security measures poses a significant challenge to the principle of security through transparency.

In light of these events, the discovery emphasizes the vulnerability of even the most sophisticated hardware-based security systems when confronted by adept attackers, particularly if there exist hardware elements that facilitate such bypassing. The reliance on undocumented hardware provisions undermines the very foundation of robust security frameworks, as highlighted by the unfolding of events linked to the iPhone's .

Luke Jones
Luke Jones
Luke has been writing about all things tech for more than five years. He is following Microsoft closely to bring you the latest news about Windows, Office, Azure, Skype, HoloLens and all the rest of their products.

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