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Author Topic: Apple Disabled Group FaceTime While Working on Bug Fix  (Read 370 times)
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« on: January 30, 2019, 02:30:57 AM »

In order to prevent people from abusing a serious FaceTime bug that was discovered yesterday, Apple appears to have disabled the Group FaceTime feature while they work on a security update.

Yesterday, a bug was discovered that allows anyone to listen to in on a person's iPhone microphone simply by placing a FaceTime call. The bug worked by calling a person via FaceTime, and before the person answers, add yourself as an additional Group FaceTime participant.

Doing this would cause the microphone of the person you are calling to turn on and you could listen through their microphone without them even answering your call. Even worse, if the person you called pressed the power button to mute the incoming FaceTime call, it would also enable the front facing camera so you could see what is happening in the room.

A demonstration of this bug can be seen in this video posted to Twitter.

As you can imagine, this bug allows for some pretty scary scenarios ranging from listening in on conversations to being able to see people in compromising situations.

According to the Apple System Status page, Apple has disabled Group FaceTime as of yesterday night at 10:16 PM. As this bug relied on the Group FaceTime feature, it was most likely disabled to prevent people from abusing this bug.

Apple System Status Page

While disabling Group FaceTime may have made it safe to use FaceTime again, there has been no public announcement from Apple indicating that this is the case. Therefore, I suggest all iOS and macOS users continue to keep FaceTime disabled until Apple formally releases a security update for this bug.

BleepingComputer has reached out to Apple for confirmation but had not heard back at the time of this publication.


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