Researchers identify critical iPhone security flaw

Posted by Aharon Etengoff

Las Vegas (Nevada) - Researchers have identified a critical iPhone security flaw that could allow hackers to take control of the shiny device. Although Club Cupertino was warned of the vulnerability in July, it has yet to issue a patch or even comment on the issue.

Security experts Charlie Miller and Collin Mulliner explained that the public needed to be cognizant of the fact that iPhones were at least as vulnerable to attack as personal computers.

"If we don't talk about it, somebody is going to do it silently," Mulliner told Reuters at the Black Hat security conference in Las Vegas. "The bad guys are going to do it no matter what."

iPhone security flaw

According to Mulliner, hackers could exploit the flaw to prevent users from making calls, acccessing the Internet and exchanging text messages. He added that the two have already tested the hacks on four German carrier networks. The hacks - which are reportedly enabled by an SMS memory corruption bug - were also successfully implemented over the AT&T network in the US.

However, Miller noted that iPhone hacking attempts could be temporarily thwarted by simply rebooting the device.

"It would stop all but the most sophisticated attacker," Miller told CNET. "[But] it doesn't take but a second to grab all your personal info from the device, and as soon as you turn it back on, the bad guy could attack you again. That's why I think this is so serious."