A macOS, iOS WebKit exploit still exists weeks after someone told Apple how to fix it

How to use the Smart Search bar in Safari on iPhone and iPad
How to use the Smart Search bar in Safari on iPhone and iPad (Image credit: iMore)

What you need to know

  • A WebKit exploit exists that could allow the execution of malicious code on a Mac, iPhone, and iPad.
  • Researchers told Apple how to fix the issue three weeks ago, but it still hasn't been done.

A security exploit that could allow malicious code to be run on Macs, iPhones, and iPads hasn't been fixed despite someone telling Apple how to do so three weeks ago. The flaw relates to WebKit across macOS, iOS, and iPadOS.

Webkit is what powers Safari and a number of similar web browsers and the bug appears to be related to AudioWorklet which manages audio output from web pages. When exploited, the bug could allow malicious code to be run as reported by ArsTechnica.

But most notable is the fact that security researchers have already provided Apple with the tools they need to fix the issue entirely – but three weeks later, that's yet to happen.

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Apple recently shared a number of updates including some that fixed another WebKit security flaw in iOS 14. It isn't clear why this one didn't make the cut or indeed if it will in a future release.

Despite still being affected by this issue, the recently released iPad Pro is still arguably one of the most secure devices you can buy, thanks in part to the App Store and its app distribution model. Be sure to check out our collection of the best iPad Pro deals before you place your order!

Oliver Haslam
Contributor

Oliver Haslam has written about Apple and the wider technology business for more than a decade with bylines on How-To Geek, PC Mag, iDownloadBlog, and many more. He has also been published in print for Macworld, including cover stories. At iMore, Oliver is involved in daily news coverage and, not being short of opinions, has been known to 'explain' those thoughts in more detail, too.

Having grown up using PCs and spending far too much money on graphics card and flashy RAM, Oliver switched to the Mac with a G5 iMac and hasn't looked back. Since then he's seen the growth of the smartphone world, backed by iPhone, and new product categories come and go. Current expertise includes iOS, macOS, streaming services, and pretty much anything that has a battery or plugs into a wall. Oliver also covers mobile gaming for iMore, with Apple Arcade a particular focus. He's been gaming since the Atari 2600 days and still struggles to comprehend the fact he can play console quality titles on his pocket computer.

1 Comment
  • Apple would need to implement, test, package, and distribute the update. Perhaps testing did not go well and the "fix" isn't so simple...either way, I'd expect it to take at least weeks.