By Paul Gorski
Researchers recently discovered security bugs in iOS 6, iOS 7 and MacOS X v10.9. These bugs could allow hackers to intercept e-mail, browsing activity and more while using your iPad, iPhone, IPod Touch or Macintosh computer. The threat for the mobile devices is most severe using public Wi-Fi hotspots, but the security bug appears to still exist for wired computer connections, too. You should apply the new security patches as soon as possible.
Security patches for iOS 6 and iOS 7 were released soon after the discovery that Apple made a simple, but huge, mistake in some security code involving secure connections. A security patch, v10.9.2, for MacOS X v10.9 and v10.9.1 was released last week. I will not bore you with details, except to say: Update the operating system on your iPad, iPhone, and iPod Touch and or Macintosh computer today if you haven’t already.
The OS X Mavericks v10.9.2 update is available now via Software Update. If you are not sure how to use Software Update, visit: http://support.apple.com/kb/HT1338. More about the update is available at: http://support.apple.com/kb/HT6114. The update fixes a number of existing bugs. MacOS X v10.9.3 is due out shortly, and is expected to fixe some audio and video bugs, but do not wait for that update. Apply all current updates now.
Depending on the version of your iPad or iPhone operating system, you should update to iOS v6.1.6 or iOS v7.1 (The security patch for v7 was included in v7.0.6, but v7.1 quickly followed that patch and was released on Monday, March 10.) iOS v7.1 offers more than security updates, improving camera, calendar and interface functionality. More information about these updates is at: http://support.apple.com/kb/HT6147 andhttp://www.apple.com/ios/ios7-update/.
If you are unsure how to update your iOS, visit: http://support.apple.com/kb/HT4623. Please note, the tutorial pictures display an update for iOS v7.0.3, you will be updating to iOS v6.1.6 or v7.1 depending on your device.
Information about a variety of MacOS X and iOS patches is available at: http://support.apple.com/kb/HT1222.
I’ve updated a few iPhones to iOS v7.0.6 and v7.1 and a laptop to MacOS X v10.9.2 without incident or problem. Your experience may vary.
Paul Gorski (www.paulgorski.com) has been a technology manager nearly 20 years, specializing in workflow solutions for printing, publishing and advertising computer users. Originally destined to be a chemist, his interest in computers began in college when he wrote a program to analyze data from lab instruments he hard-wired to the back of an Apple Iie.
Posted March 12, 2014